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E.  CAPPS,  PH.D.,  LL.D.     T.  E.  PAGE,  Lirr.D.    W.  H.  D.  ROUSE,  Lirr.D. 




[j  J.BERNOULLI    Komischf  Ikonognpt,*  I^8•fJ 









NEW    YORK    :    G.    P.    PUTNAM'S    SONS 


First  printed  1915. 
Reprinted  1019, 1022. 














THE  African  Apuleius  is  one  of  the  most  curious 
figures  of  Roman  literature.  We  know  something 
of  his  life  from  his  Apologia,  and  it  is  quite  possible 
that  at  the  beginning  and  at  the  end  of  the  Meta- 
morphoses the  description  of  Lucius,  the  hero  of  the 
story,  may  contain  a  few  autobiographical  details.  He 
was  born  of  good  family  at  Madaura,  a  town  on  the 
confines  of  Numidia  and  Gaetulia,  about  the  end  of  the 
first  quarter  of  the  second  century  A.D.,  and  while  still 
quite  a  young  man  set  out  on  a  journey  to  Alexandria. 
On  the  way  he  fell  ill  at  Oea  (supposed  to  be  the 
modern  Tripoli),  and  was  nursed  by  a  rich  widow 
named  Aemilia  Pudentilla,  who  was  rather  older 
than  himself.  He  married  her,  and  in  vexation  at 
the  unequal  match  her  relations  brought  an  action 
against  him  charging  him  with  having  won  her  love  by 
means  of  magic.  The  Apologia  referred  to  above  is 
his  speech  for  the  defence,  which  was  doubtless  suc- 
cessful ;  and  he  afterwards  settled  at  Carthage, 
whence  he  journeyed  through  various  African  towns 
giving  philosophical  lectures  and  living  the  life  of 
one  of  the  regular  Sophists  of  the  Empire,  from 
whom  he  only  differed  in  that  he  wrote  and  lectured 
in  Latin  instead  of  in  Greek.  The  date  of  his  death 
is  unknown. 

The  interests  of  Apuleius  were  before  all  centred 
in  religion,   philosophy,  and  magic.     He  seems   to 


have  known  and  disliked  the  Christianity  which  was 
rapidly  spreading  in  his  time,  and  to  have  wished  to 
commend  to  the  world  a  form  of  Platonism  which 
included  an  elaborate  system  of  angels  and  demons ; 
and  to  have  been  strongly  in  favour  of  the  Eastern 
systems  of  initiation  which  had  by  his  time  become 
exceedingly  popular  in  the  Roman  Empire  under  the 
forms  of  the  worship  of  Isis  and  Mithras.  Besides 
the  Metamorphoses  contained  in  the  present  volume, 
and  the  Apologia,  we  possess  from  his  pen  the  Florida, 
a  collection  of  extracts — "  purple  patches  " — from  his 
lectures  and  speeches,  on  all  conceivable  subjects :  a 
dialogue  on  the  god  (the  Sai'pav)  of  Socrates,  and  a 
treatise  on  Plato  and  his  doctrines.  There  is  also 
extant  a  free  version  of  the  Aristotelian  vtpl  Koa-pov 
bearing  Apuleius'  name,  but  its  ascription  to  him 
appears  to  be  doubtful. 

In  the  Metamorphoses  (or  Golden  Ass,  as  it  is  often 
called)  the  author's  religious  and  philosophical  views 
take  a  less  important  place  than  in  most  of  his 
other  works ;  and  indeed  the  last  book,  which 
contains  an  elaborate  account  of  the  hero's  initiation 
into  various  mysteries,  is  of  less  value  than  the  rest 
of  the  work  except  to  professed  students  of  the 
various  Oriental  religions  which  had  to  contend 
with  the  rising  Christianity  of  the  second  century. 
The  references  to  magic,  which  occur  throughout, 
are  of  greater  interest,  and  the  story  of  the  trans- 
formation of  the  hero  into  an  ass,  which  is  the  main 
thread  of  the  plot,  so  deeply  impressed  some  of 
his  contemporaries  and  successors  that  we  find  St. 
Augustine  l  writing  :  "  Yet  had  he  his  humane  reason 
still,  as  Apuleius  had  in  his  asse-ship,  as  himself 
writeth  in  his  booke  of  the  golden  asse  ;  bee  it  a  lie 

1  Of  the  Citie  of  God,  xvm.  18  (17).     Tr.  by  J.  H[ealey]. 


or  a  truth  that  hee  writeth  (avi  indicavit  a 
The  plot,  however,  was  not  his  own,  but  taken  from 
a  still  extant  Greek  work,  AOVK.IOS  fj  ovos,  which  was 
formerly  ascribed  to  Lucian,  though  it  is  almost 
certainly  not  his.  It  was  very  greatly  improved  by 
Apuleius,  who  cut  down  one  or  two  of  the  scenes  of 
the  original  and  then  greatly  enlarged  it  with  an 
abundance  of  excellent  stories  of  love,  sorcery,  jests, 
and  robbers ;  and,  in  particular,  inserted  in  the 
middle  of  his  work  the  long  and  beautiful  allegory 
of  Cupid  and  Psyche. 

It  seems  probable  that  many  of  these  stories 
belonged  to  the  various  collections  of  facetiae  which 
were  common  in  the  later  Greek  and  Roman  litera- 
ture, though  now  unfortunately  almost  completely 
lost.  The  most  famous  collection  was  known  as 
the  Milesian  Tales,  originally  collected  by  one  Aris- 
tides,  and  translated  into  Latin  by  the  historian 
Sisenna  in  late  republican  times  :  it  is  likely  that, 
besides  those  contained  in  the  Metamorphoses,  we 
have  specimens  of  a  couple  in  the  earlier  novel 
of  Petronius.  These  were  almost  universally,  it 
must  be  confessed,  of  more  than  doubtful  morality ; 
but  as  told  by  Apuleius  in  his  rollicking  fashion 
they  give  the  reader  little  more  than  an  impression 
of  fun  and  high  spirits,  and  the  general  effect  may 
perhaps  be  compared  with  that  of  Boccaccio's 
Decameron.  In  that  work,  indeed,  at  least  two  of 
Apuleius'  stories  appear  in  an  Italian  surrounding, 
and  the  whole  is  probably  not  very  much  unlike  what 
a  collection  of  the  Milesian  stories  must  have  been, 
except  that  Boccaccio's  milieu  is  more  romantic,  and 
there  would  have  been  in  the  collection  of  Aristides 
a  greater  number  of  the  shorter  and  more  disgraceful 
kind  of  anecdote  found  in  Poggio's  Facetiae. 


Apuleius  is  by  no  means  an  easy  author,  delightful 
as  he  is,  to  read  in  the  original  Latin.  Latin  was  not 
his  native  or  natural  language,  and  when  he  mastered 
it  he  worked  out  for  himself  a  most  extraordinary 
style,  which  seems  to  contain  the  genius  of  some  quite 
other  tongue  clothed  in  a  Latin  dress.  He  would 
make  use  of  rare  and  outlandish  words,  as  well  as 
reviving  others  which  had  dropped  out  of  the  ordi- 
nary language  since  pre-classical  times,  and  combined 
the  whole  into  a  curious  mosaic,  not  at  all  unsuitable, 
indeed,  to  the  weird  and  jolly  stories  that  he  had  to 
tell,  but  disconcerting  to  those  accustomed  to  the 
sobriety  and  regularity  of  classical  Latin.  We  are 
fortunate  indeed  in  possessing  an  Elizabethan  trans- 
lation of  the  Golden  Ass,  for  the  language  of  no 
other  age  of  our  literature  could  make  any  attempt 
to  represent  the  exuberance  of  the  original ;  and 
though  the  style  of  Adlington  is  far  more  restrained 
than  that  of  his  model,  some  of  Apuleius'  peculiarities 
show  through  it  sufficiently  to  give  the  English  reader 
at  least  an  idea  of  the  language  in  which  the  novel 
was  written. 

Of  William  Adlington  we  know  nothing  except 
that  he  dedicated  his  translation  to  the  Earl  of  Sussex, 
writing  from  University  College,  Oxford,  September 
18,  1566;  and  that  he  was  possibly  the  author  of 
a  little  verse  tract,  A  Speciall  Remedie  against  the 
furious  force  of  Lawlesse  Love,  published  thirteen 
years  later.  His  translation  must  have  been  popular, 
for  it  was  reprinted  three  times  in  the  next  thirty 
years,  and  once  again  forty  years  later  still ;  and  the 
great  rarity  of  all  these  editions  is  further  evidence 
that  they  were  appreciated  and  constantly  read.1 

1  For  an  elaborate  and  clear-sighted  criticism  of  the  merits 
and  failures  of  Adlington's  translation  the  reader  should 


This  is  the  translation  which  in  the  present  volume 
is  printed  opposite  to  the  Latin  text.  It  is,  however, 
by  no  means  as  Adlington  wrote  it.  I  have  not  only 
modernized  the  spelling  and  completely  rearranged 
the  punctuation — for  Adlington's  system  was  indeed 
"  very  obscure  and  dark,  and  thereby  consequently 
loathsome  to  the  reader  " — but  I  have  altered  it  to 
bring  it  into  greater  harmony  with  the  Latin  accord- 
ing to  modern  ideas  of  translation.  I  may  frankly 
state  that  I  have  done  so  not  without  some  very 
considerable  degree  of  repugnance,  for  meddling 
with  the  style  of  such  a  masterpiece  of  English  must 
needs  impair  the  balance  of  the  sentences,  and  intro- 
duce to  some  extent  an  incongruous  element;  but 
a  greater  degree  of  accuracy  than  Adlington  ever 
attained  is  necessary  to  the  plan  of  the  present 
series.  I  have  attempted,  not  without  considerable 
labour,  to  make  the  alterations  as  few  and  as  slight 
as  possible ;  and  the  result  is,  I  hope,  a  rendering 
which,  while  not  by  any  means  a  word-for-word 
representation  of  the  original,  is  yet  sufficiently 
accurate,  without  being  literal,  for  all  ordinary  pur- 
poses, and  at  the  same  time  preserves  the  charm  of 
the  sixteenth-century  English  version. 

The  Latin  text  here  printed  is  somewhat  eclectic. 
It  is  founded  to  a  considerable  extent,  as  all  future 
texts  of  Apuleius  must  be,  on  the  work  of  Helm, 
his  latest  editor  in  the  Teubner  series.  But  it  does  not 
by  any  means  invariably  follow  him,  and  I  have  used 
my  own  judgement  freely  in  selecting  variant  readings 

consult  Mr.  Charles  Whibley's  Introduction  to  the  Tudor 
Translation  reprint  (see  Select  Bibliography).  Mr.  Whibley  has 
proved  that  he  depended  to  some  extent  (though  by  no  means 
wholly)  on  a  French  translation,  and  has  even,  with  great 
ingenuity,  tracked  down  the  particular  rendering  he  employed. 



and  admitting  conjectures ;  I  have  called  attention 
in  the  footnotes  to  some  of  the  more  important 
departures  from  the  reading  of  the  manuscripts. 
Besides  the  text  of  Helm,  I  have  made  constant  use 
of  the  work  of  Beroaldus,  whose  commentary,  after 
the  lapse  of  more  than  four  hundred  years,  still  seems 
to  me  to  be  much  the  best  in  existence. 




14t>9.  Editio  Princeps,  printed  at  Rome  by  Sweyn- 
heym  and  Pannartz,  without  commentary. 
Edited  by  Jo.  Andreas  de  Buxis. 

1 500.  Bologna,  Benedictus  Hectoris  Faelli,  Apuleius 
cum  Beroaldi  commentariis.  Reprinted  several 
times — e.g.  Venice,  1501,  and  Paris,  1512. 

1521.     Aldine  edition,  printed  at  Venice. 

1 786.  Leiden.  Ruhnken's  edition,  embodying 
Oudendorp's  notes. 

1825.  London,  Valpy.  A  large  variorum  edition 
embodying  the  commentaries  of  all  the  most 
important  editors  up  to  that  date. 

1842.     Leipzig.     Edited  by  G.  F.  Hildebrand. 

1855.  Leipzig.  The  story  of  Cupid  and  Psyche 
only.  Edited  by  O.  Jahn. 

1907.  Leipzig,  Teubner.  Edited  by  R.  Helm  ; 
second  edition,  1913. 

Of  these  Helm's  is  the  most  valuable  for  the 
text;  the  Valpy  edition  and  any  containing 
the  commentary  of  Beroaldus,  for  explanatory 




1566.  London,  Henry  Wykes.  Adlington's  trans- 
lation, reprinted  1571,  1582,  1596,  1600  (?), 

1822.  London.  The  translation  of  Thomas  Taylor, 
the  Platonist. 

1866.  London.  A  translation  in  Bonn's  Classical 

1893.  London.  Adlington's  translation  reprinted 
in  the  series  of  Tudor  Translations. 

1904.  London,  George  Bell.  Adlington's  transla- 
tion reprinted. 

1910.  Oxford.  Translation  by  H.  E.  Butler,  now 
Professor  of  Latin  in  the  University  of  London. 

1913.  London.  Adlington's  translation  reprinted, 
with  Introduction  by  Thomas  Seccombe. 


1898.  London.  Introduction  by  Charles  Whibley 
to  the  Tudor  Translation  mentioned  above ; 
reprinted  in  the  same  writer's  Studies  in  Frank- 
ness (Heinemann). 

1900.  London.  Teuffel  and  Schwabe's  History  of 
Roman  Literature,  translated  by  G.  C.  W.  Warr. 
vol.  ii.  pp.  236  ff*. 



the  Golden  Affe, 

Conteininge  theMetamorphofie 

of  Lucius  Apuleius,   enterlaced 

totti)  fonurie  pleafauntanD  Delecta= 

ble  Cales,  foritf)  an  ercellent 

Jl^attation  of  tfje  a^ari= 

age  of  CupiDe  anD 

in  tfje  iuj. 
,  anD  DJ. 

Iranflated  out  of  Latine  into  Englifhe 
by  William  Adlington. 

Imprinted  at  London  in  Fleetftreatet 

at  the  figne  of  the  Oliphante, 

by   Henry   Wykes. 

.  1566. 


WHEN  that  I  had,  gentle  reader,  slightly  here  and 
there  run  over  the  pleasant  and  delectable  jests  of 
Lucius  Apuleius  (a,  man  of  ancient  descent,  and 
endued  with  singular  learning)  written  in  such  a 
frank  and  flourishing  style,  as  he  seemed  to  have  the 
Muses  always  at  will,  to  feed  and  maintain  his  pen  : 
and  when  again  I  perceived  the  matter  to  minister 
such  exceeding  plenty  of  mirth,  as  never  in  my 
judgement  the  like  hath  been  shewed  by  any  other,  I 
purposed  according  to  my  slender  knowledge  (though 
it  were  rudely,  and  far  disagreeing  from  the  fine  and 
excellent  doings  nowadays)  to  translate  the  same 
into  our  vulgar  tongue,  to  the  end  that  amongst  so 
many  sage  and  serious  works  (as  every  man  well  nigh 
endeavour  daily  to  increase)  there  might  be  some 
fresh  and  pleasant  matter  to  recreate  the  minds  of 
the  readers  withal.  Howbeit  I  was  eftsoons  driven 
from  my  purpose  by  two  causes :  first,  perceiving 
that  the  author  had  written  his  work  in  so  dark  and 
high  a  style,  in  so  strange  and  absurd  words,  and  in 
such  new  invented  phrases,  as  he  seemed  rather  to 
set  it  forth  to  shew  his  magnificence  of  prose,  than 
to  participate  his  doings  to  other ;  secondly,  fearing 
lest  the  translation  of  this  present  book  (which 
seemeth  a  mere  jest  and  fable,  and  a  work  worthy  to 
be  laughed  at,  by  reason  of  the  vanity  of  the  author) 
might  be  contemned  and  despised  of  all  men,  and 



so,  consequently,  I  to  be  had  in  derision  to  occupy 
myself  in  such  frivolous  and  trifling  toys.  But  on 
the  other  side,  when  I  had  throughly  learned  the 
intent  of  the  author  and  the  purpose  why  he  invented 
so  sportful  a  jest,  I  was  verily  persuaded  that  my 
small  travail  should  not  only  be  accepted  of  many, 
but  the  matter  itself  allowed  and  praised  of  all. 
Wherefore  I  intend,  God  willing,  as  nigh  as  I  can  to 
utter  and  open  the  meaning  thereof  to  the  simple 
and  ignorant,  whereby  they  may  not  take  the  same 
as  a  thing  only  to  jest  and  laugh  at  (for  the  fables  of 
Aesop  and  the  feigning  of  poets  were  never  written 
for  that  purpose)  but  by  the  pleasantness  thereof  be 
rather  induced  to  the  knowledge  of  their  present 
estate,  and  thereby  transform  themselves  into  the 
right  and  perfect  shape  of  men.  The  argument  of 
the  book  is,  how  Lucius  Apuleius,  the  author  himself, 
travelled  into  Thessaly  (being  a  region  in  Greece 
where  all  the  women  for  the  most  be  such  wonderful 
witches,  that  they  can  transform  men  into  the  figure 
of  brute  beasts)  where  after  he  had  continued  a  few 
days,  by  the  mighty  force  of  a  violent  confection  he 
was  changed  into  a  miserable  ass,  and  nothing  might 
reduce  him  to  his  wonted  shape  but  the  eating  of  a 
rose,  which,  after  the  endurance  of  infinite  sorrow, 
at  length  he  obtained  by  prayer.  Verily  under  the 
wrap  of  this  transformation  is  taxed  the  life  of 
mortal  men,  when  as  we  suffer  our  minds  so  to  be 
drowned  in  the  sensual  lusts  of  the  flesh  and  the 
beastly  pleasure  thereof  (which  aptly  may  be  called 
the  violent  confection  of  witches)  that  we  lose 
wholly  the  use  of  reason  and  virtue,  which  properly 
should  be  in  a  man,  and  play  the  parts  of  brute 
and  savage  beasts.  By  like  occasion  we  read  how 
divers  of  the  companions  of  Ulysses  were  turned 


by  the  marvellous  power  of  Circe  into  swine.  And 
find  we  not  in  the  Scripture  that  Nebuchadnezzar, 
the  ninth  king  of  Babylon,  by  reason  of  his  great 
dominions  and  realms,  fell  into  such  exceeding  pride 
that  he  was  suddenly  transformed  of  almighty  God 
into  an  horrible  monster,  having  the  head  of  an  ox, 
the  feet  of  a  bear,  and  the  tail  of  a  lion,  and  did  eat 
hay  as  a  beast  ?  But  as  Lucius  Apuleius  was  changed 
into  his  human  shape  bv  a  rose,  the  companions  of 
Ulysses  by  great  intercession,  and  Nebuchadnezzar  by 
the  continual  prayers  of  Daniel,  whereby  they  knew 
themselves  and  lived  after  a  good  and  virtuous  life  : 
so  can  we  never  be  restored  to  the  right  figure  of 
ourselves,  except  we  taste  and  eat  the  sweet  rose 
of  reason  and  virtue,  which  the  rather  by  mediation  of 
prayer  we  may  assuredly  attain.  Again,  may  not  the 
meaning  of  this  work  be  altered  and  turned  in  this 
sort?  A  man  desirous  to  apply  his  mind  to  some 
excellent  art,  or  given  to  the  study  of  any  of  the 
sciences,  at  the  first  appeareth  to  himself  an  ass 
without  wit,  without  knowledge,  and  not  much 
unlike  a  brute  beast,  till  such  time  as  by  much  pain 
and  travail  he  hath  achieved  to  the  perfectiiess  of 
the  same,  and  tasting  the  sweet  flower  and  fruit  of 
his  studies,  doth  think  himself  well  brought  to  the 
right  and  very  shape  of  a  man.  Finally,  the  Meta- 
morphose of  Lucius  Apuleius  may  be  resembled  to 
youth  without  discretion,  and  his  reduction  to  age 
possessed  with  wisdom  and  virtue. 

Now  since  this  book  of  Lucius  is  a  figure  of  man's 
life,  and  touch eth  the-  nature  and  manners  of  mortal 
men,  egging  them  forward  from  their  asinal  form  to 
their  human  and  perfect  shape,  beside  the  pleasant 
and  delectable  jests  therein  contained,  I  trust  if  my 
simple  translation  be  nothing  accepted,  yet  the  matter 



itself  shall  be  esteemed  by  such  as  not  only  delight 
to  please  their  fancies  in  reading  the  same,  but  also 
take  a  pattern  thereby  to  regenerate  their  minds 
from  brutish  and  beastly  custom.  Howbeit  I  have 
not  so  exactly  passed  through  the  author,  as  to  point 
every  sentence  as  it  is  in  Latin,  or  so  absolutely 
translated  every  word  as  it  lieth  in  the  prose  (for  so 
the  French  and  Spanish  translators  have  not  done) 
considering  the  same  in  our  vulgar  tongue  would 
have  appeared  very  obscure  and  dark,  and  thereby 
consequently  loathsome  to  the  reader,  but  nothing 
erring  from  the  true  and  natural  meaning  of  the 
author,  have  used  more  common  and  familiar  words 
(yet  not  so  much  as  I  might  do)  for  the  plainer  setting 
forth  of  the  same.  But  howsoever  it  be,  gentle  reader, 
I  pray  thee  take  it  in  good  part,  considering  that  for 
thee  I  have  taken  this  pain,  to  the  intent  that  thou 
mayest  read  the  same  with  pleasure. 



Lucius  APULEIUS  AFKICAN,  an  excellent  follower  of 
Plato  his  sect,  born  in  Madaura,  a  country  sometime 
inhabited  by  the  Romans,  and  under  the  jurisdiction 
of  Syphax,  situate  and  lying  upon  the  borders  of 
Numidia  and  Gaetulia,  whereby  he  calleth  himself 
half  a  Numidian  and  half  a  Gaetulian  :  and  Sidonius 
named  him  the  Platonian  Madaurence.  His  father, 
called  Theseus,  had  passed  all  offices  of  dignity  in 
his  country  with  much  honour  :  his  mother,  named 
Salvia,  was  of  such  excellent  virtue,  that  she  passed 
all  the  dames  of  her  time,  born  of  an  ancient  house, 
and  descended  from  the  noble  philosopher,  Plutarch, 
and  Sextus  his  nephew  :  his  wife  called  Pudentilla 
was  endowed  with  as  much  virtue  and  richness  as 
any  woman  might  be.  He  himself  was  of  an  high 
and  comely  stature,  grey-eyed,  his  hair  yellow,  and 
a  beautiful  personage ;  he  flourished  in  Carthage  in 
the  time  of  Julianus  Avitus  and  Claudius  Maximus 
proconsuls,  where  he  spent  his  youth  in  learning  the 
liberal  sciences,  and  much  profited  under  his  masters 
there,  whereby  not  without  cause  he  gloriously 
calleth  himself  the  nourice  of  Carthage,  [and]  the 
celestial  Muse  and  venerable  mistress  of  Africke. 
Soon  after,  at  Athens  (where  in  times  past  the  well 
of  all  doctrine  flourished)  he  tasted  many  of  the  cups 


of  the  Muses,  he  learned  poetry,  geometry,  music, 
logic,  and  the  universal  knowledge  of  philosophy, 
and  studied  not  in  vain  the  nine  Muses,  that  is  to 
say,  the  nine  noble  and  royal  disciplines.  Imme- 
diately after  he  went  to  Rome,  and  studied  there  the 
Latin  tongue  with  such  labour  and  continual  study 
that  he  achieved  to  great  eloquence,  and  was  known 
and  approved  to  be  excellently  learned,  whereby  he 
might  worthily  be  called  Polyhistor,  that  is  to  say, 
one  that  knoweth  much  or  many  things. 

And  being  thus  no  less  endued  with  eloquence 
than  with  singular  learning,  he  wrote  many  books  for 
them  that  should  come  after  :  whereof  part  by  negli- 
gence of  times  be  intercepted,  and  part  now  extant, 
do  sufficiently  declare  with  how  much  wisdom  and 
doctrine  he  flourished,  and  with  how  much  virtue  he 
excelled  amongst  the  rude  and  barbarous  people. 
The  like  was  Anacharsis  amongst  the  most  luskish 
Scythes.  But  amongst  the  books  of  Lucius  Apuleius, 
which  are  perished  and  prevented,  howbeit  greatlv 
desired  of  us  nowadays,  one  was  entituled  Banquet- 
ing Questions,  another  entreating  of  the  nature  of 
fish,  another  of  the  generation  of  beasts,  another 
containing  his  Epigrams,  and  another  called  Herma- 
goras  :  but  such  as  are  now  extant  are  the  four  books 
named  Floridorum,  wherein  is  contained  a  flourishing 
style  and  a  savoury  kind  of  learning,  which  delighteth, 
holdeth,  and  rejoiceth  the  reader  marvellously ; 
wherein  you  shall  find  a  great  variety  of  things,  as 
leaping  one  from  another  :  one  excellent  and  copious 
oration,  containing  all  the  grace  and  virtue  of  the 
art  oratory,  whereby  he  cleareth  himself  of  the  crime 
of  art  magic,  which  was  slanderously  objected  against 
him  by  his  envious  adversaries,  wherein  is  contained 
such  force  of  eloquence  and  doctrine  as  he  seemeth  to 



pass  and  excel  himself.  There  is  another  book  of  the 
god  or  spirit  of  Socrates,  whereof  S.  Augustine  maketh 
mention  in  his  book  of  the  definition  of  spirits  and 
description  of  men  :  two  other  books  of  the  opinion 
of  Plato,  wherein  is  briefly  contained  that  which 
before  was  largely  expressed  :  one  book  of  Cosmo- 
graphy, comprising  many  things  of  Aristotle's 
Meteors  :  the  dialogue  of  Trismegistus  translated  by 
him  out  of  Greek  into  Latin,  so  fine,  that  it  rather 
seemeth  with  more  eloquence  turned  into  Latin,  than 
it  was  before  written  in  Greek  :  but  principally  these 
eleven  books  of  the  Golden  Ass  are  enriched  with 
such  pleasant  matter,  with  such  excellency  and 
variety  of  flourishing  tales,  that  nothing  may  be 
more  sweet  and  delectable ;  whereby  worthily  they 
may  be  entituled,  The  Books  of  the  Golden  Ass, 
for  the  passing  style  and  matter  therein.  For  what 
can  be  more  acceptable  than  this  Ass  of  Gold  in- 
deed ?  Howbeit  there  may  be  many  which  would 
rather  entitle  it  Metamorphosis,  that  is  to  say,  a 
transfiguration  or  transformation,  by  reason  of  the 
argument  and  matter  therein. 




That  I  to  thee  some  joyous  jests  may  show  in  gentle  gloee, 
And  frankly  feed  thy  bended  ears  with  passing  pleasant  prose : 
So  that  thou  deign  in  seemly  sort  this  wanton  book  to  view, 
That  is  set  out  and  garnished  fine,  with  written  phrases  new. 
I  will  declare  how  one  by  hap  his  human  figure  lost, 
And  how  in  brutish  formed  shape  his  loathed  life  he  tossed. 
And  how  he  was  in  course  of  time  from  such  estate  unfold, 
Who  eftsoons,  turned  to  pristine  shape,  his  lot  unlucky  told. 

WHAT  and  who  he  was  attend  a  while,  and  you  shall 
understand  that  it  was  even  I,  the  writer  of  mine 
own  Metamorphose  and  strange  alteration  of  figure. 
Hymettus,  Athens,  Isthmia,  Ephyrus,  Taenaros,  and 
Sparta,  being  fat  and  fertile  soils  (as  I  pray  you  give 
credit  to  the  books  of  more  everlasting  fame)  be 
places  where  mine  ancient  progeny  and  lineage  did 
sometime  flourish  :  there  I  say,  in  Athens,  when  I 
was  young,  I  went  first  to  school.  Soon  after  (as 
a  stranger)  I  arrived  at  Rome,  whereas  by  great 
industry,  and  without  instruction  of  any  school 
master,  I  attained  to  the  full  perfection  of  the  Latin 
tongue  :  behold,  I  first  crave  and  beg  your  pardon, 
lest  I  should  happen  to  displease  or  offend  any  of  you 
by  the  rude  and  rustic  utterance  of  this  strange  and 
foreign  language.  And  verily  this  new  alteration  of 



speech  doth  correspond  to  the  enterprised  matter 
whereof  I  purpose  to  entreat ;  I  will  set  forth  unto 
you  a  pleasant  Grecian  jest.  Whereunto,  gentle 
reader,  if  thou  wilt  give  attendant  ear,  it  will 
minister  unto  thee  such  delectable  matter  as  thou 
shalt  be  well  contented  withal. 



tell  the  matter  in  a  more  plain  and  simple  fashion.' 
Then  answered  he  :  '  Will  you  hear  one  or  two  or 
more  of  the  deeds  which  she  hath  done  ?  For 
whereas  she  enforceth  not  only  the  inhabitants  of 
this  country  here,  but  also  the  Indians  and  Ethiopians 
and  even  the  Antipodeans  to  love  her  in  most  raging 
sort,  such  are  but  trifles  and  chips  of  her  occupation ; 
but  I  pray  you  give  ear,  and  I  will  declare  of  greater 
matters,  which  she  hath  done  openly  and  before  the 
face  of  all  men. 

" '  This  woman  had  a  certain  lover  whom,  by  the 
utterance  of  one  only  word,  she  turned  into  a  beaver 
because  he  loved  another  woman  beside  her,  and  the 
reason  why  she  transformed  him  into  such  a  beast,  is 
that  it  is  his  nature,  when  he  perceives  the  hunters  and 
hounds  to  draw  after  him,  to  bite  off  his  members 
and  lay  them  in  the  way,  that  the  pursuers  may  be 
at  a  stop  when  they  find  them,  and  to  the  intent 
that  so  it  might  happen  unto  him  (because  he  fancied 
another  woman)  she  turned  him  into  that  kind  of 
shape.  Likewise  she  changed  one  of  her  neighbours, 
being  an  old  man  and  one  that  sold  wine,  in  that  he 
was  a  rival  of  her  occupation,  into  a  frog,  and  now 
the  poor  wretch  swimming  in  one  of  his  own  pipes  of 
wine,  and  being  well  nigh  drowned  in  the  dregs, 
doth  cry  and  call  with  croakings  continually  for  his 
old  guests  and  acquaintance  that  pass  by.  Likewise 
she  turned  one  of  the  advocates  of  the  Court  (because 
he  pleaded  and  spake  against  her)  into  a  horned 
ram,  and  now  the  poor  ram  doth  act  advocate. 
Moreover  she  caused  the  wife  of  a  certain  lover  that 
she  had,  because  she  spake  sharply  and  wittily 
against  her,  should  never  be  delivered  of  her  child, 
but  should  remain,  her  womb  closed  up,  everlastingly 
pregnant,  and  according  to  the  computation  of  all 
B  17 


damnavit  et,  ut  cuncti  numerant,  iam  octo  annorum 
onere  misella  ilia  velut  elephantum  paritura  dis- 
10  tenditur.  Quae  cum  subinde  ac  multis  noceret, 
publicitus  indignatio  percrebruit,  statutumque  ut  in 
earn  die  altera  severissime  saxorum  iaculationibus 
vindicaretur :  quod  consilium  virtutibus  cantionum 
antevortit  et,  ut  ilia  Medea  unius  dieculae  a  Creone 
impetratis  induciis  totam  eius  domum  filiamque  cum 
ipso  sene  flammis  coronalibus  deusserat,  sic  haec 
devotionibus  sepulchralibus  in  scrobem  procuratis, 
ut  raihi  temulenta  narravit  proxime,  cunctos  in  suis 
sibi  domibus  tacita  numinum  violentia  clausit,  ut  toto 
biduo  non  claustra  perfringi,  non  fores  evelli,  non 
denique  parietes  ipsi  quiverint  perforari,  quoad 
mutua  hortatione  consone  clamitarent,  quam  sanc- 
tissime  deierantes  sese  neque  ei  manus  admolituros, 
et  si  quis  aliud  cogitarit,  salutare  laturos  subsidium  : 
et  sic  ilia  propitiata  totam  civitatem  absoluit.  At 
vero  coetus  illius  auctorem  nocte  intempesta  cum 
tola  domo,  id  est  parietibus  et  ipso  solo  et  omni 
fundamento,  ut  erat,  clausa  ad  centesimum  lapidem 
in  aliam  civitatem  summo  vertice  montis  exasperati 
sitanij  et  ob  id  ad  aquas  sterilem,  transtulit.  Et 
quoniam  densa  inhabitantium  aedificia  locum  novo 
hospiti  non  dabant,  ante  portam  proiecta  domo 


men,  it  is  eight  years  past  since  the  poor  woman 
began  first  to  swell,  and  now  she  is  increased  so  big 
that  she  seemeth  as  though  she  would  bring  forth 
some  great  elephant :  and  when  this  was  known 
abroad  and  published  throughout  all  the  town,  they 
took  indignation  against  her,  and  ordained  that 
the  next  day  she  should  be  most  cruelly  stoned  to 
death  ;  which  purpose  of  theirs  she  prevented  by  the 
virtue  of  her  enchantments,  and  as  Medea  (who 
obtained  of  King  Creon  but  one  day's  respite  before 
her  departure)  did  burn  in  the  flames  of  the  bride's 
garland  all  his  house,  him  and  his  daughter,  so  she, 
by  her  conjurations  and  invocation  of  spirits,  which 
she  uses  over  a  certain  trench,  as  she  herself  declared 
unto  me  being  drunken  the  next  day  following, 
closed  all  the  persons  of  the  town  so  sure  in  their 
houses,  by  the  secret  power  of  her  gods,  that  for 
the  space  of  two  days  they  could  not  come  forth,  nor 
open  their  gates  nor  doors,  nor  even  break  down 
their  walls  ;  whereby  they  were  enforced  by  mutual 
consent  to  cry  unto  her  and  to  bind  themselves 
straitly  that  they  would  never  after  molest  or  hurt 
her,  and  moreover  if  any  did  offer  her  any  injury 
they  would  be  ready  to  defend  her ;  whereupon 
she,  moved  at  their  promises,  released  all  the 
town.  But  she  conveyed  the  principal  author  of 
this  ordinance,  about  midnight,  with  all  his  house, 
the  walls,  the  ground  and  the  foundation,  into 
another  town  distant  from  thence  a  hundred  miles 
situate  and  being  on  the  top  of  a  barren  hill,  and 
by  reason  thereof  destitute  of  water :  and  because 
the  edifices  and  houses  were  so  close  builded  together 
that  it  was  not  possible  for  the  house  to  stand 
there,  she  threw  down  the  same  before  the  gate 
of  the  town.' 



1 1  discessit.'  '  Mira  '  inquam  '  Nee  minus  saeva,  mi 
Socrates,  memoras.  Denique  mihi  quoque  non  par- 
vam  incussisti  sollicitudinem,  immo  vero  formidinein, 
iniecto  11011  scrupulo  sed  lancea,  ne  quo  numiuis 
ministerio  similiter  usa  sermones  istos  nostros  anus 
ilia  cognoscat.  Itaque  maturius  quieti  nos  reponamus 
et  somno  levata  lassitudine  noctis  antelucio  aufugia- 
mus  istinc  quam  pote  longissime.' 

"  Haec  adhuc  me  suadente  insolita  vinolentia  ac 
diurna  fatigatione  pertentatus  bonus  Socrates  iam 
sopitus  stertebat  altius.  Ego  vero  adducta  fore 
pessulisque  firmatis,  grabatulo  etiam  pone  cardines 
supposito  et  probe  aggesto.  super  eum  me  recipio : 
ac  primum  prae  metu  aliquantisper  vigilo,  dein  circa 
tertiam  ferme  vigiliam  paululum  conniveo.  Commo- 
dum  quieveram,  et  repente  impulsu  niaiore  quam 
ut  latrones  crederes  ianuae  reserantur,  immo  vero 
fractis  et  evolsis  funditus  cardinibus  prosternuntur. 
Grabatulus,  alioquin  breviculus  et  uno  pede  mutilus 
ac  putris,  impetus  tanti  violentia  prosternitur,  me 
quoque  evolutum  atque  excussum  humi  recidens 
inversum  cooperit  ac  tegit. 

12  "Tune  ego  seusi  naturalitus  quosdam  affectus  in 
contrarium  provenire  :  nam  ut  lacrimae  saepicule  de 
gaudio  prodeunt,  ita  et  in  illo  nimio  pavore  risum 
nequivi  continere,  de  Aristomene  testudo  factus. 
Ac  dum  infimum  deiectus,  obliquo  aspectu,  quid 


"Then  spake  I  and  said  :  'O  my  friend  Socrates,  you 
have  declared  unto  me  many  marvellous  things  and 
no  less  cruel,  and  moreover  stricken  me  also  with  no 
small  trouble  of  mind,  yea  rather  with  great  prick  of 
fear,  lest  the  same  old  woman,  using  the  like  practice, 
should  chance  to  hear  all  our  communication : 
wherefore  let  us  now  sleep,  though  it  be  early,  and 
after  that  we  have  done  away  our  weariness  with 
rest  let  us  rise  betimes  in  the  morning  and  ride  from 
hence  before  day  as  far  as  we  may.' 

"  In  speaking  these  words,  it  fortuned  that  Socrates 
did  fall  asleep,  and  snored  very  soundly,  by  reason 
of  his  new  plenty  of  meat  and  wine  and  his  long 
travail.  Then  I  closed  and  barred  fast  the  doors  of 
the  chamber,  and  put  my  bed  and  made  it  fast  behind 
the  door  and  so  laid  me  down  to  rest ;  but  at  first  I 
could  in  no  wise  sleep  for  the  great  fear  which  was 
in  my  heart,  until  it  was  about  midnight,  and  then 
I  closed  my  eyes  for  a  little:  but  alas,  I  had  just 
begun  to  sleep,  when  behold  suddenly  the  chamber 
doors  brake  open  ;  nay,  the  locks,  bolts  and  posts  fell 
down  with  greater  force  than  if  thieves  had  been 
presently  come  to  have  spoiled  and  robbed  us.  And 
my  bed  whereon  I  lay,  being  a  truckle-bed  and 
somewhat  short,  and  one  of  the  feet  broken  and 
rotten,  by  violence  was  turned  upside  down,  and  I 
likewise  was  overwhelmed  and  covered  lying  in  the 

"  Then  perceived  I  in  myself,  that  certain  effects 
of  the  mind  by  nature  are  turned  contrary.  For  as 
tears  oftentimes  are  shed  for  joy,  so  I  being  in  this 
fearful  perplexity  could  not  forbear  laughing,  to  see 
how  of  Aristomenes  I  was  made  like  unto  a  tortoise. 
And  while  I  lay  on  the  ground  covered  in  the  happy 
protection  of  my  pallet,  I  peeped  from  under  the  bed 



rei  sit  grabatuli  sollertia  munitus  opperior,  video 
rnulieres  duas  altioris  aetatis ;  lucernam  lucidam 
gerebat  una,  spongiam  et  nudum  gladium  altera ; 
hoc  habitu  Socratem  bene  quietum  circumstetere. 
Infit  ilia  cum  gladio  *  Hie  est,  soror  Panthia,  carus 
Endymion,  hie  Catamitus  metis,  qui  diebus  ac 
noctibus  illusit  aetatulam  meam :  hie,  qui  meis 
araoribus  subterhabitis  non  solum  me  diffamat  pro- 
bris,  verum  etiam  fugam  instruit.  At  ego  scilicet 
Ulixi  astu  deserta  vice  Calypsonis  aeternam  soli- 
tudinem  flebo.'  Et  porrecta  dextera  meque  Panthiae 
suae  demonstrate,  'At  hie  bonus'  inquit '  Consiliator 
Aristomenes,  qui  fugae  huius  auctor  fuit,  et  nunc 
morti  proximus  iam  humi  prostratus  grabatulo  suc- 
cubans  iacet,  et  haec  omnia  conspicit,  impune  se 
laturum  meas  conturnelias  putat.  Faxo  eum  sero, 
immo  statim,  immo  vero  iam  nunc  tit  et  praecedentis 
dicacitatis  et  instantis  curiositatis  paeniteat.' 
13  "  Haec  ego  ut  accepi,  sudore  frigido  miser  perfluo 
tremore  viscera  quatior,  ut  grabatulus  etiam  suc- 
cussu  meo1  inquietus  super  dorsum  meum  palpitando 
saltaret.  At  bona  Panthia  '  Quin  igitur '  inquit 
'  Soror,  hunc  primum  bacchatim  discerpimus  vel 
membris  eius  destinatis  virilia  desecamus  ? '  Ad 
haec  Meroe  (sic  enim  reapse  nomen  eius  tune  fabulis 
Socratis  convenire  sentiebam)  '  Immo '  ait  '  Supersit 
hie  saltern,  qui  miselli  huius  corpus  parva  contumulet 
Immo,'  et  capite  Socratis  in  alterum  dimoto  latus 

i  The  MSS  appear  to  have  succuasus  sum  to.    The  correction 
is  due  to  Helm. 



to  see  what  would  happen.  And  behold  there  entered 
two  old  women,  the  one  bearing  a  burning  torch, 
and  the  other  a  sponge  and  a  naked  sword.  And  so 
in  this  habit  they  stood  about  Socrates  being  fast 
asleep.  Then  she  which  bare  the  sword  said  unto 
the  other :  '  Behold,  sister  Panthia,  this  is  my  dear 
Endymion  and  my  sweet  Ganymede,  which  both  day 
and  night  hath  abused  my  wanton  youthfulness ; 
this  is  he  (who  little  regarding  my  love)  doth  not 
only  defame  me  with  reproachful  words,  but  also 
intendeth  to  run  away.  And  I  shall  be  forsaken  by 
like  craft  as  Ulysses  did  use,  and  shall  continually 
bewail  my  solitariness  as  Calypso';  which  said  she 
pointed  towards  me,  that  lay  under  the  bed,  and 
shewed  me  to  Panthia.  'This  is  he,'  quoth  she, 
'  Which  is  his  good  counsellor,  Aristomenes,  and 
persuadeth  him  to  forsake  me,  and  now  (being  at 
the  point  of  death)  he  lieth  prostrate  on  the  ground 
covered  with  his  bed,  and  hath  seen  all  our  doings, 
and  hopeth  to  escape  scot-free  from  my  hands  for  all 
his  insults ;  but  I  will  cause  that  he  shall  repent 
himself  too  late,  nay  rather  forthwith  of  his  former 
intemperate  language  and  his  present  curiosity.' 

"Which  words  when  I  heard,  I  fell  into  a  cold 
sweat,  and  my  heart  trembled  with  fear,  in  so  much 
that  the  bed  over  me  did  likewise  rattle  and  shake 
and  dance  with  my  trembling.  Then  spake  Panthia 
unto  Meroe,  and  said :  '  Sister,  let  us  by  and  by  tear 
him  in  pieces,  or  else  tie  him  by  the  members  and 
so  cut  them  off.'  Then  Meroe  (for  thus  I  learned 
that  her  name  really  was  that  which  I  had  heard  in 
Socrates'  tale)  answered  :  '  Nay,  rather  let  him  live, 
to  bury  the  corpse  of  this  poor  wretch  in  some  hole 
of  the  earth,'  and  therewithal  she  turned  the  head 
of  Socrates  on  the  other  side,  and  thrust  her  sword 
"*•»  23 


per  iugulum  sinistrum  capulo  terms  gladium 
totum  ei  demergit,  et  sanguinis  eruptionem 
utriculo  admoto  excipit  diligenter,  ut  nulla  stilla 
compareret  usquam  :  haec  ego  meis  oculis  aspexi.  Nam 
etiam,  ne  quid  demutaret,  credo,  a  victimae  religione, 
immissa  dextera  per  vulnus  illud  ad  viscera  penitus, 
cor  miseri  contubernalis  mei  Meroe  bona  scrutata 
protulit,  cum  ille  impetu  teli  praesecata  gula  vocem, 
immo  stridorem  incertum  per  vulnus  effunderet 
et  spiritum  rebulliret.  Quod  vulnus  qua  maxime 
patebat  spongia  offulciens  Panthia  'Heus  tu '  inquit 
'  Spongia,  cave  in  mari  nata  per  fluvium  transeas.' 
His  editis  abeunt :  remoto  grabatulo  varicus  super 
faciem  meara  residentes  vesicam  exonerant,  quoad 
me  urinae  spurcissimae  madore  perluerent. 
1 4  "Commodum  limen  evaserant,  et  fores  ad  pristinum 
staturh  integrae  resurgunt ;  cardines  ad  foramina 
resident,  postes  ad  repagula  redeunt,  ad  claustra 
pessuli  recurrunt.  At  ego  ut  eram  etiam  mine  luimi 
proiectus,  inanimis,  nudus  et  frigidus  et  lotio  per- 
litus,  quasi  recens  utero  matris  editus,  immo  vero 
semimortuus,  verum  etiam  ipse  mihi  supervivens  et 
postumus,  vel  certe  destinatae  iam  cruci  candidates, 
'  Quid '  inquani  '  De  me  fiet,  ubi  iste  iugulatus 
mane  paruerit  ?  Cui  videbor  verisimilia  dicere  pro- 
ferens  vera  ?  "  Proclamares  saltern  suppetiatum,  si 
resistere  vir  tantus  mulieri  nequibas  :  sub  oculis  tuis 


up  to  the  hilt  into  the  left  part  of  his  neck,  and 
received  the  blood  that  gushed  out  with  a  small 
bladder,  that  no  drop  thereof  fell  beside  ;  this  thing 
I  saw  with  mine  own  eyes  ;  and  then  Meroe,  to  the 
intent  (as  I  think)  she  might  alter  nothing  that  per- 
taineth  to  sacrifice,  which  she  accustomed  to  make, 
thrust  her  hand  down  through  that  wound  into  the 
entrails  of  his  body,  and  searching  about,  at  length 
brought  forth  the  heart  of  my  miserable  companion 
Socrates,  who  (having  his  throat  cut  in  such  sort) 
gave  out  a  doleful  cry  by  the  wound,  or  rather  a 
gasping  breath,  and  gave  up  the  ghost.  Then  Panthia 
stopped  the  wide  wound  of  his  throat  with  the  sponge 
and  said  :  *  O,  sponge  sprung  and  made  of  the  sea, 
beware  that  thou  pass  not  over  a  running  river.' 
This  being  said,  they  moved  and  turned  up  my  bed, 
and  then  they  strode  over  me  and  staled  upon  me 
till  I  was  wringing  wet. 

"  When  this  was  ended,  they  went  their  ways  and 
the  doors  closed  fast,  the  hinges  sank  in  their  old 
sockets,  the  bolts  ran  into  the  doorposts,  the  pins 
fell  into  the  bars  again.  But  I  that  lay  upon  the 
ground,  like  one  without  soul,  naked  and  cold  and 
wringing  wet  with  filth,  like  to  one  that  were  newly 
born,  or  rather,  one  that  were  more  than  half  dead, 
yet  reviving  myself,  and  appointed  as  I  thought  for 
the  gallows,  began  to  say  :  'Alas,  what  shall  become 
of  me  to-morrow  when  my  companion  shall  be  found 
murdered  here  in  the  chamber  ?  To  whom  shall  I 
seem  to  tell  any  similitude  of  truth,  when  as  I  shall 
tell  the  truth  indeed  ?  They  will  say  :  "  If  thou, 
being  so  great  a  man,  wert  unable  to  resist  the 
violence  of  the  woman,  yet  shouldst  thou  have  cried 
at  least  for  help ;  wilt  thou  suffer  the  man  to  be 
slain  before  thy  face  and  say  nothing  ?  Or  why  did 


homo  iugulatur,  et  siles  ?  Cur  autem  te  simile  latro- 
cinium  non  peremit  ?  Cur  saeva  crudelitas  vel  propter 
indicium  sceleris  arbitro  pepercit  ?  Ergo  quoniam 
evasisti  mortem,  nunc  illo  redi."  ' 

"  Haec  identidem  mecum  replicabam,  et  nox  ibat  in 
diem  :  optimum  itaque  factu  visum  est  anteluculo 
furtim  evadere  et  viam  licet  trepido  vestigio  capes- 
sere.  Sumo  sarcinulam  meam,  subdita  clavi  pessulos 
reduco:  at  illae  probae  et  fideles  ianuae,  quae  sua 
sponte  reseratae  nocte  fuerant,  vix  tandem  et  aeger- 
rime  tune  clavis  suae  crebra  immissione  patefiunt. 
15  Et  '  Heus  tu,  ubi  es?'  inquam :  '  Valvas  stabuli 
absolve,  antelucio  volo  ire.'  Janitor  pone  stabuli 
ostium  humi  cubitans,  etiam  nunc  semisomnus 
'  Quid  ?  Tu  '  inquit  '  Ignoras  latronibus  infestari 
vias,  qui  hoc  noctis  iter  incipis  ?  Nam  etsi  tu, 
alicuius  facinoris  tibi  conscius  scilicet,  mori  cupis, 
nos  cucurbitae  caput  non  habemus  ut  pro  te  moria- 
mur.'  '  Non  longe  '  inquam  '  Lux  abest :  et  prae- 
terea  quid  viatori  de  summa  pauperie  latrones  auferre 
possunt  ?  An  ignoras,  inepte,  nudum  nee  a  decem 
palaestritis  despoliari  posse  ? '  Ad  haec  ille  marci- 
dus  et  semisopitus  in  alterum  latus  evolutus  '  Unde 
autem '  inquit  '  Scio  an  convectore  illo  tuo,  cum  quo 
sero  devorteras,  iugulato  fugae  mandes  praesidium  ?  ' 
"  Illud  horae  memini  me  terra  dehiscente  ima  Tar- 
tara  inque  his  canem  Cerberum  prorsus  esurientem 
mei  prospexisse :  ac  recordabar  profecto  bonam 
Meroen  non  misericordia  iugulp  meo  pepercisse  sed 


not  they  slay  thee  likewise  ?  Why  did  their  cruelty 
spare  thee  that  stood  by  and  saw  them  commit  that 
horrible  fact  ?  Wherefore  although  thou  hast  escaped 
their  hands,  yet  thou  shalt  not  escape  ours."  ' 

"  While  I  pondered  these  things  often  with  myself 
the  night  passed  on  into  day,  so  I  thought  best  to 
take  my  horse  secretly  before  dawn  and  go  fearfully 
forward  on  my  journey.  Thus  I  took  up  my  packet, 
unlocked  and  unbarred  the  doors,  but  those  good  and 
faithful  doors  which  in  the  night  did  open  of  their 
own  accord  could  then  scarcely  be  opened  with  their 
keys  after  frequent  trials,  and  when  I  was  out  I 
cried  :  '  Ho,  sirrah  ostler,  where  art  thou  ?  Open 
the  stable  door,  for  I  will  ride  away  before  dawn.' 
The  ostler  lying  behind  the  stable  door  upon  a  pallet 
and  half  asleep,  '  What  ? '  quoth  he,  '  Do  not  you 
know  that  the  ways  be  very  dangerous  with  robbers  ? 
What  mean  you  to  set  forth  at  this  time  of  night? 
If  you  perhaps  (guilty  of  some  heinous  crime)  be 
weary  of  your  life,  yet  think  you  not  that  we  are 
such  pumpkin-headed  sots  that  we  will  die  for  you.' 
Then  said  I :  '  It  is  well  nigh  day,  and  moreover  what 
can  thieves  take  from  him  that  hath  nothing  ?  Dost 
not  thou  know  (fool  as  thou  art)  that  if  thou  be  naked, 
if  ten  trained  wrestlers  should  assail  thee,  they  could 
not  spoil  or  rob  thee  ? '  Whereunto  the  drowsy  ostler 
half  asleep,  and  turning  on  the  other  side,  answered  : 
'  What  know  I  whether  you  have  murdered  your 
companion  whom  you  brought  in  yesternight  or  no, 
and  now  seek  safety  by  escaping  away  ? ' 

"O  Lord,  at  that  time  I  remember  that  the  «?arth 
seemed  to  open,  and  that  I  saw  at  Hell  gate  the  dog 
Cerberus  gaping  to  devour  me,  and  then  I  verily 
believed  that  Meroe  did  not  spare  my  throat,  moved 
with  pity,  but  rather  cruelly  pardoned  me  to  bring 



16  saevitia  cruci  me  reservasse.  In  cubiculum  itaque 
reversus  de  genere  tumultuario  mortis  mecum  deli- 
berabam.  Sed  cum  nullum  aliud  telum  mortiferum 
Fortuna  quam  solum  mihigrabatulum  subministraret, 
'lam  iam  grabatule '  inquam  'Animo  meo  caris- 
sime,  qui  mecum  tot  aerumnas  exanclasti,  conscius 
et  arbiter  quae  nocte  gesta  sunt,  quern  solum  in  meo 
reatu  testem  innocentiae  citare  possum,  tu  mihi  ad 
inferos  festinanti  submiiiistra  telum  salutare ' ;  et 
cum  dicto  restim,  qua  erat  intextus,  aggredior  ex- 
pedire  ac  tigillo,  quod  fenestrae  subditum  altrinsecus 
prominebat,  iniecta  atque  obdita  parte  fuiiiculi  et 
altera  firmiter  in  iiodum  coacta,  ascenso  grabatulo 
ad  exitium  sublimatus  et  immisso  l  capite  laqueum 
induo.  Sed  dum  pede  altera  fulcimentum  quo  sus- 
tinebar  repello,  ut  ponderis  deductu  restis  ad  inglu- 
viem  astricta  spiritus  officia  discluderet,  repente 
putris  alioquin  et  vetus  funis  dirumpitur,  atque  ego 
de  alto  recidens  Socratem — nam  iuxta  me  iacebat — 

17  superruo  cumque  eo  in  terrain  devolvor.  Et  ecce 
in  ipso  momento  ianitor  introrumpit  exerte  clami- 
tans  'Ubi  es  tu,  qui  alta  nocte  immodice  festi- 
nabas,  et  mine  stertis  involutus  ?  '  Ad  haec  nescio  an 
casu  nostro  an  illius  absono  clamore  experrectus 
Socrates  exsurgit  prior,  et  '  Nee  '  inquit  '  Immerito 
stabularios  hos  omnes  hospites  detestantur.  Nam 
iste  curiosus  dum  importune  irrumpit — credo  studio 
rapiendi  aliquid — clamore  vasto  marcidum  alioquin 
me  altissimo  somno  excussit.' 

1  Oudendorp's  correction  for  the  MSS'  misso. 


me  to  the  gallows.  Wherefore,  I  returned  to  my 
chamber  and  there  devised  with  myself  in  what 
violent  sort  I  should  finish  my  life.  But  when  I  saw 
that  fortune  would  minister  unto  me  no  other  instru- 
ment than  my  bed,  I  said  :  '  O  bed,  O  bed,  most 
dear  unto  me  at  this  present,  which  hast  abode  and 
suffered  with  me  so  many  miseries,  judge  and  arbiter 
of  such  things  as  were  done  here  this  night,  whom 
only  I  may  call  to  witness  for  my  innocence,  render 
(I  say)  unto  me  some  wholesome  weapon  to  end  my 
life  that  am  most  willing  to  die.'  And  therewithal 
I  pulled  out  a  piece  of  the  rope  wherewith  the  bed 
was  corded,  and  tied  one  end  thereof  about  a  rafter 
which  stood  forth  beneath  the  window,  and  with  the 
other  end  I  made  a  sliding  knot  and  stood  upon  my 
bed  to  cast  myself  from  aloft  into  destruction,  and  so 
put  my  neck  into  it.  But  when  I  pushed  away  with 
my  foot  that  which  supported  me  beneath,  so  that 
the  noose  when  my  weight  came  upon  it  might  choke 
the  passage  of  my  breath,  behold  suddenly  the  rope 
being  old  and  rotten  burst  in  the  middle,  and  I  fell 
down  tumbling  upon  Socrates  that  lay  nigh  me,  and 
with  him  i-olled  upon  the  floor.  And  even  at  that 
very  time  the  ostler  came  in  crying  with  a  loud 
voice,  and  said  :  '  Where  are  you  that  made  such 
haste  at  deep  night,  and  now  lie  wallowing  and 
snoring  abed  ? '  Whereupon  (I  know  not  whether 
it  was  by  our  fall  or  by  the  harsh  cry  of  the  ostler) 
Socrates  (as  waking  out  of  a  sleep)  did  rise  up  first 
and  said  :  '  It  is  not  without  cause  that  strangers 
do  speak  evil  of  all  such  ostlers,  for  this  caitiff'  in 
his  coming  in,  and  with  his  ci'ying  out,  I  think 
under  colour  to  steal  away  something,  hath  waked 
me,  that  was  beside  very  weary,  out  of  a  sound 



"  Emerge  laetus  atque  alacer  insperato  gaudio  per- 
fusus,  et  '  Ecce,  ianitor  fidelissime,  comes  et  pater 
meus  et  frater  meus,  quern  nocte  ebrius  occisum  a 
me  calumniabaris,'  et  cum  dicto  Socraten  deosculabar 
amplexus  :  at  ille  odore  alioquin  spurcissimi  humoris 
percussus,  quo  me  Lamiae  illae  infecerant,  vehementer 
aspernatur  :  '  Apage  te '  inquit  '  Fetorem  extremae 
latrinae,'  et  causas  coepit  huius  odoris  comiter  in- 
quirere.  At  ego  miser  afficto  ex  tempore  absurdo 
ioco  in  alium  sermonem  interitionem  eius  denuo 
derivo  et  iniecta  dextra  '  Quin  imus '  inquam  '  Et 
itineris  matutini  gratiam  capimus.'  Sumo  sarcinu- 
lam  et  pretio  mansionis  stabulario  persoluto  capessi 
mus  viam. 

18  "  Aliquantum  processeramus  et  iam  iubaris  exortu 
cuncta  collustrantur,  et  ego  curiose  sedulo  arbitrabar 
iugulum  comitis,qua  parte  gladium  delapsum  videram, 
et  mecum  '  Vesane/  aio  '  Qui  poculis  et  vino  sepul- 
tus  extrema  somniasti.  Ecce  Socrates  integer,  sanus, 
incolumis.  Ubi  vulnus  ?  Spongia  ubi  ?  Ubi  pos- 
tremum  cicatrix  tarn  alta,  tarn  recens  ?  '  et  ad  ilium 
'  Ne '  inquam  '  Immerito  medici  fidi  cibo  et  crapula 
distentos  saeva  e.  gi-avia  somniare  autumant :  mini 
denique  quod  poculis  vesperi  minus  temperavi,  nox 
acerba  diras  et  truces  imagines  obtulit,  ut  adhuc  me 
credam  cruore  humano  aspersum  atque  impiatum.' 


"Then  I  rose  up  joyful,  as  I  hoped  not  to  be,  with 
•A  merry  countenance,  saying :  '  Behold,  good  ostler, 
my  friend,  my  companion  and  my  brother  whom 
thou  being  drunken  in  the  night  didst  falsely  affirm 
to  be  murdered  by  me.'  And  therewithal  I  embraced 
my  friend  Socrates  and  kissed  him ;  but  he  smelling 
the  stink  wherewith  those  hags  had  embrued  me, 
thrust  me  away  and  said  :  '  Away  with  thee  with 
thy  filthy  odour,'  and  then  he  began  gently  to 
enquire  how  that  noisome  scent  happened  unto  me, 
but  I  (with  some  light  jest  feigning  and  colouring 
the  matter  for  the  time)  did  break  off  his  talk  into 
another  path,  and  take  him  by  the  hand  and  said  : 
<  Why  tarry  we  ?  Why  leave  we  the  pleasure  of  this 
fair  morning  ?  Let  us  go.'  And  so  I  took  up  my 
packet,  and  pa:d  the  charges  of  the  house,  and  we 

"  We  had  not  gone  a  mile  out  of  the  town  but  it 
was  broad  day,  and  then  I  diligently  looked  upon 
Socrates'  throat  to  see  if  I  could  espy  the  place 
where  Meroe  thrust  in  her  sword,  and  I  thought  with 
myself :  '  What  a  madman  am  I,  that  (being  overcome 
with  wine  yesternight)  have  dreamed  such  terrible 
things !  Behold,  I  see  Socrates  is  sound,  safe  and  in 
health.  Where  is  his  wound  ?  Where  is  the  sponge  ? 
Where  is  his  great  and  new  cut  ?  '  And  then  I  spake 
to  him  and  said :  '  Verily  it  is  not  without  occasion 
that  physicians  of  experience  do  affirm,  that  such  as 
fill  their  gorges  abundantly  with  meat  and  drink 
shall  dream  of  dire  and  horrible  sights,  for  I  myself 
(not  restraining  mine  appetite  yesternight  from  the 
pots  of  wine)  did  seem  to  see  in  this  bitter  night 
strange  and  cruel  visions,  that  even  yet  I  think 
myself  sprinkled  and  wet  with  human  blood ' ; 
whereunto  Socrates  laughing,  made  answer  and  said : 



Ad  haec  ille  subridens  '  At  tu '  inquit  'Non  sanguine 
sed  lotio  perfusus  es,  verum  tamen  et  ipse  per  som- 
nium  iugulari  visus  sum  mihi.  Nam  et  iugulum  istum 
dolui  et  cor  ipsum  mihi  avelli  putavi  et  nunc  etiam 
spiritu  deficior  et  genua  quatior  et  gradu  titubo  et 
aliquid  cibatus  refovendo  spiritu  desidero.'  '  En ' 
inquam  '  Paratum  tibi  adest  ientaculum/  et  cum 
dicto  manticam  meam  humero  exuo,  caseum  cum 
pane  propere  ei  porrigo,  et  '  luxta  platanum  istam 
residamus '  aio. 

19  "Quo  facto  et  ipse  aliquki  indidem  sumo,  eumque 
avide  esitantem  aspicio  aliquanto  intentiore  macie 
atque  pallore  buxeo  deficientem  video.  Sic  denique 
eum  vitalis  color  turbaverat  ut  mihi  prae  metu, 
nocturnas  etiam  Furias  illas  imaginanti,  frustulum 
panis  quod  primum  sumpseram,  quamvis  admodum 
modicum,  niediis  faucibus  inhaereret,  ac  neque 
deorsum  demeare  neque  sursum  remeare  posset. 
Nam  et  crebritas  ipsa  commeantium  metum  mihi 
cumulabat :  quis  enim  de  duobus  comitum  alterum 
sine  alterius  noxa  peremptum  crederet  ?  Verum  ille, 
ut  satis  detruncaverat  cibum,  sitire  impatienter 
coeperat ;  nam  et  optimi  casei  bonam  partem  avide 
devoraverat,  et  haud  ita  longe  radices  platani  lenis 
fluvius  in  speciem  placidae  paludis  ignavus  ibat 
argento  vel  vitro  aemulus  in  colorem.  '  En '  inquam 
'  Explere  latice  fontis  lacteo.'  Assurgit  ille  et 
oppertus  paululum  planiorem  ripae  marginem  com- 
plicitus  in  genua  appronat  se  avidus  affectans 


'  Nay,  thou  art  not  wet  with  the  blood  of  men,  but 
thou  art  embrued  with  stinking  filth  :  and  verily  I 
myself  dreamed  this  night  that  my  throat  was  cut 
and  that  I  felt  the  pain  of  the  wound,  and  that  my 
heart  was  pulled  out  of  my  belly,  and  the  remem- 
brance thereof  makes  me  now  to  fear,  and  my  knees 
do  tremble  that  I  totter  in  my  gait,  and  therefore  I 
would  fain  eat  somewhat  to  strengthen  and  revive 
my  spirits.'  Then  said  I  :  '  Behold,  here  is  thy  break- 
fast,' and  therewithal  I  opened  my  scrip  that 
hanged  upon  my  shoulder,  and  gave  him  bread  and 
cheese,  and  '  Let  us  sit  down,'  quoth  I,  '  Under  that 
great  plane-tree.' 

"  Now  I  also  ate  part  of  the  same  with  him :  and 
while  I  beheld  him  eating  greedily,  I  perceived  that 
he  wore  thin  and  meagre  and  pale  as  boxwood,  and 
that  his  lively  colour  faded  away,  as  did  mine  also, 
remembering  those  terrible  furies  of  whom  I  lately 
dreamed,  in  so  much  that  the  first  morsel  of  bread 
that  I  put  in  my  mouth  (which  was  but  very  small) 
did  so  stick  in  my  jaws  that  I  could  neither  swallow 
it  down  nor  yet  yield  it  up ;  and  moreover  th,e 
number  of  them  that  passed  by  increased  my  fear, 
for  who  is  he,  that  would  believe  that  one  of  two 
companions  die  in  the  high  way  without  injury  done 
by  the  other?  But  when  that  Socrates  had  eaten 
sufficiently  he  wore  very  thirsty,  for  indeed  he  had 
well  nigh  devoured  a  whole  good  cheese,  and  behold 
there  was  behind  the  roots  of  the  plane-tree  a 
pleasant  running  water  which  went  gently  like  to  a 
quiet  pond,  as  clear  as  silver  or  crystal,  and  I  said 
unto  him  :  '  Come  hither,  Socrates,  to  this  water  and 
drink  thy  fill  as  it  were  milk.'  And  then  he  rose, 
and  waiting  a  little  he  found  a  flat  space  by  the 
river  and  kneeled  down  by  the  side  of  the  bank  in 

c  S3 


poculum  :  necdum  satis  extremis  labiis  summum  aquae 
rorem  attigerat,  et  iugulo  eius  vulnus  dehiscit  in 
profundum  patorem,  et  ilia  spongia  de  eo  repente 
devolvitur  eamque  parvus  admodum  comitatur  cruor: 
denique  corpus  exanimatum  in  flumen  paene  cernuat, 
nisi  ego  altero  eius  pede  retento  vix  et  aegre  ad 
ripam  superiorem  attraxi,  ubi  defletum  pro  tempore 
comitem  misellum  arenosa  humo  in  amnis  vicinia 
sempiterna  contexi.  Ipse  trepidus  et  eximie  metuens 
mihi  per  diversas  et  avias  solitudines  aufugi  et  quasi 
conscius  mihi  caedis  humanae  relicta  patria  et  Lare 
ultroneum  exilium  amplexus  nunc  Aetoliam  novo 
contracto  matrimonio  colo." 

20  Haec  Aristomenes.  At  ille  comes  eius,  qui  statim 
initio  obstinata  incredulitate  sermonem  eius  respuebat, 
"  Nihil "  inquit  "  Hac  fabula  fabulosius,  nihil  isto 
mendacio  absurdius/'  et  ad  me  conversus  "  Tu  autem  " 
inquit  "  Vir,  ut  habitus  et  habitudo  demonstrat, 
ornatus,  accredis  x  huic  fabulae  ? "  "Ego  vero" 
inquam  "Nihil  impossibile  arbitror,  sed  utcumque 
fata  decreverint,  ita  cuncta  mortalibus  provenire : 
nam  et  mihi  et  tibi  et  cunctis  homiriibus  multa  usu 
venire  mira  et  paene  infecta,  quae  tamen  ignaro 
relata  fidem  perdant.  Sed  ego  huic  et  credo  Hercule 
et  gratas  gratias  memini,  quod  lepidae  fabulae  festivi- 
tate  nos  avocavit ;  asperam  denique  ac  prolixam  viam 
sine  labore  ac  taedio  evasi.  Quod  beneficium  etiam 
ilium  vectorem  meum  credo  laetari :  sine  fatigatione 

1  So  Petschenig  for  the  MSS'  accedis. 


his  greedy  desire  to  drink  ;  but  he  had  scarce  touched 
the  water  with  his  lips  when  behold,  the  wound  of 
his  throat  opened  wide,  and  the  sponge  suddenly  fell 
into  the  water  and  after  issued  out  a  little  remnant 
of  blood,  and  his  body  (being  then  without  life)  had 
fallen  into  the  river,  had  not  I  caught  him  by  the 
leg,  and  so  with  great  ado  pulled  him  up.  And  after 
that  I  had  lamented  a  good  space  the  death  of  my 
wretched  companion,  I  buried  him  in  the  sands  to 
dwell  for  ever  there  by  the  river.  Which  done, 
trembling  and  in  great  fear  I  rode  through  many 
outways  and  desert  places,  and  as  if  culpable  of 
murder,  I  forsook  my  country,  my  wife  and  my 
children,  and  came  to  Aetolia,  an  exile  of  my  own 
free  will,  where  I  married  another  wife." 

This  tale  told  Aristomenes,  and  his  fellow  which 
before  obstinately  would  give  no  credit  unto  him, 
began  to  say  :  "  Verily  there  was  never  so  foolish  a 
tale,  nor  a  more  absurd  lie  told  than  this"  ;  and  then 
he  spake  unto  me,  saying  :  "  Ho,  sir,  what  you  are  I 
know  not,  but  your  habit  and  countenance  declareth 
that  you  should  be  some  honest  gentleman,  do  you 
believe  his  tale  ?  "  "  Yea,  verily,"  quoth  I,  "  Why 
not  ?  I  think  nothing  impossible  ;  for  whatsoever  the 
fates  have  appointed  to  men,  that  I  believe  shall 
happen.  For  many  things  chance  unto  me,  and  unto 
you,  and  to  divers  others,  wonderful  and  almost 
unheard  of,  which  being  declared  unto  the  ignorant 
be  accounted  as  lies.f  But  verily  I  give  credit  unto 
his  tale,  and  render  entire  thanks  unto  him  in  that 
(by  the  pleasant  relation  of  this  pretty  tale)  he  hath 
distracted  us  so  that  I  have  quickly  passed  and 
shortened  this  long  and  weariful  journey,  and  I  think 
that  my  horse  also  was  delighted  with  the  same,  and 
he  brought  me  to  the  gate  of  this  city  without  any 



sui  me  usque  ad  istam  civitatis  portam  non   dorso 
illius  sed  meis  auribus  provecto." 

'21  Is  finis  nobis  et  sermonis  et  itineris  communis 
fuit :  nam  comites  utrique  ad  villulam  proximam 
laevorsum  abierunt.  Ego  vero  quod  primum  in- 
gressu  stabulum  conspicatus  sum,  accessi,  et  de 
quadam  anu  caupona  illico  percontor  "  Estne " 
inquam  "  Hypata  haec  ci vitas  ?  "  Adnuit.  "  Nostine 
Milonem  quendam  e  primoribus  ? "  Arrisit  et 
"Vere"  inquit  "Primus  istic  perhibetur  Milo,  qui 
extra  pomerium  et  urbem  totam  colit."  "  Remote  " 
iuquam  "  loco,  parens  optima,  die  oro  et  cuiatis  sit 
et  quibus  deversetur  aedibus  ?  "  "  Videsne  "  inquit 
"  Extremas  fenestras,  quae  foris  urbem  prospiciunt  et 
altrinsecus  fores  pvoximum  respicientes  angiportum? 
Inibi  iste  Milo  deversatur  ampliter  nummatus  et 
longe  opulentus,  verum  extremae  avaritiae  et  sordis 
infimae  infamis  homo,  foenus  denique  copiosum  sub 
arrabone  auri  et  argenti  crebriter  exercens,  exiguo 
Lare  inclusus  et  aerugini  semper  intentus,  cum 
.  uxorem  etiam  calamitatis  suae  comitem  habeat. 
Neque  praeter  unicam  pascit  ancillam  et  habitu 
mendicantis  semper  incedit." 

Ad  haec  ego  risum  subicio :  "  Benigne  "  inquam 
"  Et  prospicue  Demeas  meus  in  me  consuluit,  qui 
peregrinaturum  tali  viro  conciliavit,  in  cuius  hos- 
22  pitio  nee  fumi  nee  nidoris  nebulam  vererer,"  et  cum 
dicto  modico  secus  progressus  ostium  accedo  et 
ianuam  firmiter  oppessulatam  pulsare  vocaliter  incipio. 


pain  at  all,  not  so  much  by  his  back,  as  by  mine  own 

Thus  ended  both  our  talk  and  our  journey,  for 
the}'  two  turned  on  the  left  hand  to  the  next  village, 
and  I  rode  up  to  the  first  inn  that  I  saw,  and  I  espied 
an  old  woman,  of  whom  I  enquired  whether  that  city 
was  called  Hypata  or  no,  who  answered  :  "  Yes." 
Then  I  demanded  whether  she  knew  one  Milo,  one 
of  the  first  men  of  the  city,  whereat  she  laughed, 
and  said  :  "Verily  it  is  not  without  cause  that  Milo 
is  accounted  first  in  the  city,  for  he  dwells  altogether 
without  the  boundary."  To  whom  I  said  again  :  "  I 
pray  thee,  good  mother,  do  not  mock,  but  tell  me 
what  manner  of  man  he  is,  and  where  he  dwelleth." 
"  Marry,"  quoth  she,  "  Do  not  you  see  those  bay 
windows,  which  on  the  one  side  look  out  upon  the 
city,  and  the  doors  on  the  other  side  to  the  next 
lane  :  there  Milo  dwells,  very  rich  both  in  money 
and  substance,  but  by  reason  of  his  great  avarice  and 
covetousness  he  is  evil  spoken  of,  and  he  is  a  man 
that  liveth  all  by  usury,  and  lending  his  money  upon 
pledges  of  silver  and  gold.  Moreover  he  dwelleth 
in  a  small  house  and  is  ever  counting  his  money,  and 
hath  a  wife  that  is  a  companion  of  his  extreme 
misery,  neither  keepeth  he  any  more  in  his  house 
than  one  only  maid,  and  he  goes  apparelled  like  unto 
a  beggar." 

Which  when  I  heard  I  laughed  with  myself  and 
thought :  "  In  faith,  my  friend  Demeas  hath  served 
me  well  and  with  forethought,  which  hath  sent  me, 
being  a  stranger,  unto  such  a  man,  in  whose  house  I 
shall  not  be  troubled  either  with  smoke  or  with  the 
scent  of  meat,"  and  therewithal  I  rode  to  the  door, 
which  was  fast  barred,  and  knocked  aloud  and  cried. 
Then  there  came  forth  a  maid  which  said :  "  Ho, 



Tandem  adulescentula    quaedam   procedens  "  Heus 
tu  "  inquit   "  Qui  tarn  fortiter    fores    verberasti,  sub 
qua    specie    mxituari    cupis  ?       An    tu    solus    ignoras 
prater    aurum    argentumque      nullum    nos     pignus 
admittere?"        "  Meliora "     iiiquam    "  Ominare,  et 
potius    responde   an   intra  aedes   erum   tuura    offen- 
derim."     "Plane;"  inquit  "  Sed  quae  causa  quaes- 
tionis    huius  ? "      "  Litteras   ei   a   Corinthio    Demea 
scfiptas  ad  eum  reddo."       "Dum  annuntio,"  inquit 
"  Hie  ibidem  me  opperimino,"  et  cum  dicto  rursum 
foribus  oppessulatis  intro   capessit.      Modico  deinde 
regressa  patefactis  foribus  "  Rogat  te  "  inquit.  Intuli 
me  eumque  accubantum  exiguo  admodum  grabatulo 
et  commodum  cenare  incipientem  invenio  :  assidebat 
pedes  uxor  et  mensa  vacua  posita,  cuius  monstratu 
"En"  inquit  "  Hospitium."     "Bene"ego,  et  illico 
ei  litteras  Demeae  trado.     Quibus  propei-iter  lectis 
"  Amo  "  inquit  "  Meum  Demean,  qui   mihi   tantum 
23  conciliavit    hospitem,"    et  cum    dicto  iubet  uxorem 
decedere  utque  in  eius  locum  assidam  iubet,  meque 
etiam   nunc  verecundia    cunctantem  arrepta  lacinia 
detrahens   "  Asside  "  inquit  "  Istic  :  nam  prae  metu 
latronum   nulla   sessibula   ac    ne  sufficientem  supel- 
lectilem  parare  nobis  licet." 

Feci,  et  "  Sic  ego  te  "  inquit  "Etiam  de  ista  corporis 
speciosa  habitudine  deque  hac  virginali  prorsus  vere- 
cundia generosa  stirpe  proditum  et  recte  conicerem, 
sed  et  meus  Demeas  eadem  litteris  pronuntiat.  Ergo 
brevitatem  gurgustioli  nostri  ne  spernas  peto.  Erit 


sirrah,  that  knock  so  fast,  in  what  kind  of  sort  will 
you  borrow  money  ;  know  you  not  that  we  use  to  take 
no  pledge  unless  it  be  either  gold  or  silver  ?  "  To 
whom  I  answered  :  "  I  pray  thee,  maid,  speak  more 
gently,  and  tell  me  whether  thy  master  be  within  or 
no."  "Yes,"  quoth  she,  "That  he  is;  why  do  you 
ask  ?  "  "  Marry,"  said  I,  "  I  am  come  from  Corinth, 
and  have  brought  him  letters  from  Demeas  his 
friend."  Then  said  the  maid :  "  I  pray  you  tarry 
here  till  I  tell  him  so,"  and  therewithal  she  closed  the 
doors  and  went  in,  and  after  a  while  she  returned 
again,  and  said  :  "  My  master  desireth  you  to  come 
in  "  ;  and  so  I  did,  where  I  found  him  sitting  upon  a 
very  little  bed,  just  going  to  supper,  and  his  wife  sat 
at  his  feet,  but  there  was  no  meat  upon  the  table  ; 
and,  pointing  at  it,  "  Behold,"  said  he,  "  Your  enter- 
tainment." "  Well,"  quoth  I,  and  straightway 
delivered  to  him  the  letters  which  1  brought  from 
Demeas :  which  when  he  had  quickly  read,  he  said  : 
"  Verily,  I  thank  my  friend  Demeas  very  much,  in 
that  he  hath  sent  me  so  worthy  a  guest  as  you  are  "  : 
and  therewithal  he  commanded  his  wife  to  sit  away, 
and  bade  me  sit  in  her  place,  and  when  I  was  about 
refusing  by  reason  of  courtesy,  he  pulled  me  by  the 
garment  and  willed  me  to  sit  down.  "  For  we  have," 
quoth  he,  "  No  other  stool  here,  nor  other  great  store 
of  household  stuff  for  fear  of  robbing." 

Then  I  (according  to  his  commandment)  sat  down  : 
and  he  fell  into  communication  with  me,  and  said  : 
"  Verily  I  conjecture  (and  rightly)  by  the  comely 
feature  of  your  body,  and  by  the  maidenly  shame- 
fastness  of  your  face,  that  you  are  a  gentleman  born, 
as  my  friend  Demeas  hath  no  less  declared  the  same 
in  his  letters  :  wherefore  I  pray  you,  take  in  good 
part  our  poor  lodgings,  and  behold,  yonder  chamber 



tibi  adiacens  et  ecce  illud  cubiculum  honestum  re* 
ceptaculum  :  fac  libenter  cleverseris  in  nostro.  Nam 
et  maiorem  domurn  dignatione  tua  feceris  et  tibi 
specimen  gloriosum  arrogaris,  si  contentus  Lare 
parvulo  Thesei  illius  cognominis  patris  tui  virtutes 
aemulaveris,  qui  non  est  aspernatus  Hecales  anus 
hospitium  tenue  "  :  et  vocata  anciliula,  "  Fotis,"  inquit 
"  Sarcinulas  hospitis  susceptas  cum  fide  conde  in  illud 
cubiculum,  ac  simul  ex  promptuario  oleum  unctui  et 
lintea  tersui  et  cetera  huic  eidem  usui  prefer  ociter 
et  hospitem  meum  produc  ad  proximas  balneas  :  satis 
24  arduo  itinere  atque  prolixo  fatigatus  est."  His  ego 
auditis  mores  atque  parsimoniam  ratiocinans  Milonis, 
volensque  me  artius  ei  conciliate,  "  Nihil "  inquam 
"  Rerum  istarum,  quae  itineris  ubique  nos  comitantur, 
indigemus.  Sed  et  balneas  facile  percontHbimur. 
Plane  quod  est  mihi  summe  praecipuum,  equo,  qui 
me  strenue  pervexit,  faenum  atque  hordeum  acceptis 
istis  nummulis  tu,  Fotis^  emito." 

His  actis  et  rebus  meis  in  illo  cubiculo  conditis 
pergens  ipse  ad  balneas,  ut  prius  aliquid  nobis  cibatui 
prospicerem,  forum  cupidinis  peto  inque  eo  piscatum 
opiparem  expositum  video  et  percontato  pretio,  quod 
centum  nummis  indicaret,  aspernatus  viginti  denariis 
praestinavi.  Inde  me  comniodum  egredientem  con- 
tinuatur  Pythias  condiscipulus  apud  Athenas  Atticas 
meus,  qui  me  post  aliquam  multum  temporis  avnanter 
agnitum  invadit,  amplexusque  ac  comiter  deosculatus 


hard  by  is  at  your  commandment,  use  it  as  your  own  ; 
then  you  shall  both  magnify  our  house  by  your 
deigning  and  shall  gain  to  yourself  good  report,  if, 
being  contented  with  a  humble  lodging,  you  shall 
resemble  and  follow  the  virtuous  qualities  of  your 
good  father's  namesake  Theseus,  who  disdained  not 
the  slender  and  poor  cottage  of  old  Hecale."  And 
then  he  called  his  maid,  which  was  named  Fotis,  and 
said  :  "Carry  this  gentleman's  packet  into  the  cham- 
ber and  lay  it  up  safely,  and  bring  quickly  from  the 
cupboard  oil  to  anoint  him,  and  a  towel  to  rub  him, 
and  other  things  necessary ;  and  then  bring  my  guest 
to  the  nearest  baths,  for  I  know  he  is  very  weary  of 
so  long  and  difficult  travel."  These  things  when  I 
heard,  I  partly  perceived  the  manners  and  parsimony 
of  Milo,  and  (endeavouring  to  bring  myself  further 
in  his  favour)  I  said  :  "  Sir,  there  is  no  need  of  any 
of  these  things,  for  they  are  everywhere  my  com- 
panions by  the  way ;  and  easily  I  shall  enquire  my 
way  unto  the  baths,  but  my  chief  care  is  that  my 
horse  be  well  looked  to,  for  he  brought  me  hither 
roundly,  and  therefore,  I  pray  thee,  Fotis,  take  this 
money  and  buy  some  hay  and  oats  for  him." 

When  this  was  done  and  all  my  things  brought 
into  the  chamber,  I  walked  towards  the  baths,  but 
first  I  went  to  the  provision  market  to  buy  some 
victuals  for  my  supper,  whereas  I  saw  great  plenty 
of  fish  set  out  to  be  sold,  and  so  I  cheapened 
part  thereof,  and  that  which  they  first  held 
at  an  hundred  pieces,  I  bought  at  length  for 
twenty  pence :  which  when  I  had  done  and  was 
departing  away,  Pythias,  one  of  mine  old  companions 
and  fellow  at  Athens,  fortuned  to  pass  by,  and 
viewing  me  a  good  space,  in  the  end  brought  me 
kindly  to  his  remembrance,  and  gently  came  and 



"  Mi  Luci,"  ait  "  Sat  Pol  diu  est  quod  intervisimus  te, 
at  Hercule  exinde  cum  a  Vestio  l  magistro  digressi 
sumus.  Quae  autem  tibi  causa  peregrinationis  huius  ?  " 
"  Crastino  die  scies  :  "  inquam  "  Sed  quid  istud  ?  Voti 
gaudeo  :  nam  et  lixas  et  virgas  et  habitum  prorsus 
magistratui  congruentem  in  te  video."  "  Annonam 
curamus/'  ait  "Et  aedilem  gerimus,  et  si  quid  obsonare 
cupis,  utique  commodabimus."  Abnuebam,  quippe 
qui  iam  cenae  affatim  piscatum  prospexeramus  :  sed 
enim  Pythias  visa  sportula,  succussisque  in  aspectum 
planiorem  piscibus,  "At  has  quisquilias  quanti 
parasti  ?  "  "  Vix  "  inquam  "Piscatori  extorsimus  acci- 
25  pere  viginti  denarios."  Quo  audito  statim  arrepta 
dextera  postliminio  me  in  forum  cupidinis  reducens 
"  Et  a  quo  "  inquit  "  Istorum  nugamenta  haec  com- 
parasti  ?  "  Demonstro  seniculum  :  in  angulo  sedebat. 
Quern  confestim  pro  aedilitatis  imperio  voce  asperrima 
increpans  "  Iam  iam  "  inquit  "  Nee  amicis  quidem  nos- 
tris  vel  omnino  ullis  hospitibus  parcitis,  quod  tarn 
magnis  pretiis  pisces  frivolos  indicatis  et  florem 
Thessalicae  regionis  ad  instar  solitudinis  et  scopuli 
edulium  caritate  deducitis  ?  Sed  non  impune  :  iam 

1  The  name,  whatever  it  is,  has  been  corrupted  in  the  MSS 
to  Dstio.     Other  suggestions  are  Dositheo  and  Clytio. 


kissed  me,  saying  :  "  O  my  dear  friend  Lucius,  it  is  a 
great  while  past  since  we  two  saw  each  other,  and 
moreover,  from  the  time  that  we  departed  from  our 
master  Vestius  I  never  heard  any  news  of  you  ;  I 
pray  you,  Lucius,  tell  me  the  cause  of  your  peregrina- 
tion hither."  Then  I  answered  and  said  :  "  I  will 
make  relation  thereof  unto  you  to-morrow  :  but  what 
is  this  ?  Verily  I  think  that  you  have  obtained  your 
own  desire,  whereof  I  am  right  glad.  For  I  see 
these  servitors  that  follow  you,  and  these  rods  or 
verges  which  they  bear  :  and  this  habit  which  you 
wear,  like  unto  a  magistrate."  Then  answered 
Pythias:  "I  bear  the  office  and  rule  of  the  clerk  of 
the  market,  and  therefore  if  you  will  aught  for  your 
supper,  speak  and  I  will  purvey  it  for  )7ou."  Then  I 
thanked  him  heartily  and  said  I  had  bought  fish 
sufficient  already  for  my  dinner,  but  Pythias,  when 
he  espied  my  basket,  took  it  and  shook  it,  so  that 
the  fish  might  come  to  view,  and  demanded  of  me 
what  I  paid  for  all  my  sprats.  "  In  faith,"  quoth  I, 
"  I  could  scarce  enforce  the  fishmonger  to  sell  them 
for  twenty  pence"  ;  which  when  he  heard,  he  seized 
my  hand  and  brought  me  back  again  into  the  market, 
and  enquired  of  me  of  whom  I  had  bought  such 
wretched  stuff.  I  shewed  him  the  old  man  which 
sat  in  a  corner,  whom  straightway  (by  reason  of  his 
office)  he  did  greatly  blame,  and  said  :  "  Is  it  thus 
that  you  serve  and  handle  strangers  ?  And  especially 
our  friends  ?  Wherefore  sell  you  this  fish  so  dear 
which  is  not  worth  a  halfpenny  ?  Now  perceive  I 
well  that  you  are  an  occasion  to  make  this  place, 
which  is  the  flower  of  all  Thessaly,  to  be  forsaken  of 
all  men  and  reduce  it  into  an  uninhabitable  rock,  by 
reason  of  your  excessive  prices  of  victuals  ;  but  assure 
yourself  that  you  shall  not  escape  without  punish- 



enim  faxo  scias  quemadmodum  sub  meo  magisterio 
mali  debent  coerceri/'  et  profusa  in  medium  sportula 
iubet  officialem  suum  insuper  pisces  inscendere  ac 
pedibus  suis  totos  obterere.  Qua  contentus  morum 
severitudine  meus  Pythias,  ac  mihi  ut  abirem 
suadens,  "  Sufficit  mihi,  o  Luci,"  inquit  "  Seniculi 
tanta  haec  contumelia."  His  actis  consternatus  ac 
prorsus  obstupidus  ad  balneas  me  refero,  prudentis 
condiscipuli  valido  consilio  et  nummis  simul  privatus 
et  cena,  lautusque  ad  hospitium  Milonis  ac  dehinc 
cubiculum  me  reporto. 

26  Et  ecce  Fotis  ancilla  "  Rogat  te  "  inquit  "Hospes." 
At  ego  iam  inde  Milonis  abstinentiae  cognitor  ex- 
cusavi  comiter,  quod  viae  vexationem  non  cibo  sed 
somno  censerem  diluendam.  Isto  accepto  pergit 
ipse  et  iniecta  dextera  clementer  me  trahere  ado- 
ritur :  ac  dum  cunctor,  dum  modeste  renitor,  "  Non 
prius "  inquit  "  Discedam  quam  me  sequaris,"  et 
dictum  iureiurando  secutus  iam  obstinationi  suae 
me  ingratis  oboedientem  perducit  ad  ilium  suum 
grabatulum,  et  residenti  "Quam  salve  agit"  inquit 
"  Demeas  noster  ?  Quid  uxor  ?  Quid  liberi  ?  Quid 
vernaculi?"  Narro  singula.  Percontatur  accuratius 
causas  etiam  peregrinationis  meae  ;  quas  ubi  probe 
protuli,  iam  et  de  patria  nostra  et  eius  primoribus 



ment,  and  you  shall  know  what  mine  office  is,  and 
how  I  ought  to  punish  such  as  do  offend."  Then  he 
took  my  basket  and  cast  the  fish  on  the  ground,  and 
commanded  one  of  his  servants  to  tread  them  all 
under  his  feet ;  so  doing  was  Pythias  well  pleased 
with  the  severity  he  shewed  in  his  office,  and  bade 
me  farewell,  and  said  that  he  was  content  with  the 
shame  and  reproach  done  unto  the  old  caitiff.  So  I 
went  away,  all  amazed  and  astonished,  towards  the 
baths,  considering  with  myself,  and  devising  of  the 
strong  hand  of  that  so  prudent  companion  of  mine, 
Pythias,  whereby  I  had  lost  both  my  money  and  my 
meat  :  and  there,  when  1  had  washed  and  refreshed 
my  body,  I  returned  again  to  Milo's  house,  and  so 
got  into  my  chamber. 

Then  came  Fotis  immediately  unto  me,  and  said 
that  her  master  desired  me  to  come  to  supper,  but  I 
(not  ignorant  of  Milo's  abstinence)  prayed  courteously 
that  I  might  be  pardoned,  since  I  thought  best  to  ease 
my  weary  bones  rather  with  sleep  and  quietness  than 
with  meat.  When  Fotis  had  told  this  unto  Milo,  he 
came  himself  and  took  me  by  the  hand  to  draw  me 
gently  with  him,  and  while  I  did  hold  back  and 
modestly  excuse  me,  "  I  will  not,"  quoth  he,  "  Depart 
from  this  place  until  such  time  as  you  shall  go  with 
me,"  and  to  confirm  the  same  he  bound  his  words 
with  an  oath,  whereby  with  insistence  he  enforced 
me  all  against  my  will  to  follow  him  and  he  brought 
me  into  his  chamber,  where  he  sat  me  down  upon  the 
bed,  and  demanded  of  me  how  his  friend  Demeas  did, 
his  wife,  his  children,  and  all  his  family  ;  and  I  made 
him  answer  to  every  question ;  and  specially  he 
enquired  the  causes  of  my  peregrination  and  travel ; 
which  when  1  had  declared,  he  yet  busily  enquired  of 
the  state  of  my  country,  and  the  chief  citizens,  and 



ac  denique  de  ipso  praeside  scrupulosissime  ex- 
plorans,  ubi  me  post  itineris  tarn  saevi  vexationem 
sensit  fabularum  quoque  serie  fatigatum  in  verba 
media  somnolentum  desinere  ac  nequicquam,  de- 
t'ectum  iam,  incerta  verborum  salebra  balbutire, 
tandem  patitur  cubitum  concederem.  Evasi  ali- 
quando  rancidi  senis  loquax  et  famelicum  convivium 
somno,  non  cibo,  sravatus,  cenatus  solis  fabulis  et  in 
cubiculum  reversus  optatae  me  quieti  reddidi. 


principally  of  our  Lieutenant  and  Viceroy.  And 
when  he  perceived  that  I  was  not  only  wearied  by 
my  hard  travel  but  also  with  talk,  and  that  I  fell 
asleep  in  the  midst  of  my  tale,  and  further  that  I 
spake  nothing  directly  or  advisably,  but  babbled  only 
in  imperfect  words,  he  suffered  me  to  depart  to  my 
chamber.  So  escaped  I  at  length  from  the  prattling 
and  hungry  supper  of  this  rank  old  man,  and  being 
heavy  with  sleep  and  not  with  meat  (as  having 
supped  only  with  talk)  I  returned  unto  my  chamber 
and  there  betook  me  to  my  quiet  and  long-desired 


1  UT  primum  nocte  discussa  sol  novus  diem  fecit, 
et  somno  simul  emersus  et  lectulo,  anxius  alioquin  et 
nimis  cupidus  cognoscendi  quae  rara  miraque  sunt, 
reputansque  me  media  Thessaliae  loca  tenere,  quo 
artis  magicae  nativa  contamina  totius  orbis  consono 
ore  celebrentur,  fabulamque  illam  optimi  comitis 
Aristomenis  de  situ  civitatis  huius  exortam,  sus- 
pensus  alioquin  et  voto  simul  et  studio,  curiose 
singula  considerabam.  Nee  fuit  in  ilia  civitate  quod 
aspiciens  id  esse  erederem  quod  esset,  sed  omnia 
prorsus  ferali  murmure  in  aliam  effigiem  translata, 
ut  et  lapides  quos  offenderem  de  homine  duratos,  et 
aves  quas  audirem  indidem  plumatas,  et  arbores  quae 
pomerium  ambirent  similiter  foliatas,  et  fontanos 
latices  de  corporibus  humanis  fluxos  erederem.  lam 
statuas  et  imagines  incessuras,  pai'ietes  locuturos, 
boves  et  id  genus  pecua  dicturas  praesagium,  de 
ipso  vero  caelo  et  iubaris  orbe  subito  venturum 



As  soon  as  night  was  past  and  the  new  day  began  to 
spring,  I  fortuned  to  awake  and  rose  out  of  my  bed 
as  half  amazed,  and  indeed  very  desirous  to  know 
and  see  some  marvellous  and  strange  things,  re- 
membering with  myself  that  I  was  in  the  midst  part 
of  all  Thessaly,  where,  by  the  common  report  of  all 
the  world,  is  the  birthplace  of  sorceries  and  enchant- 
ments, and  I  oftentimes  repeated  with  myself  the 
tale  of  my  companion  Aristomenes  whereof  the  scene 
was  set  in  this  city ;  all  agog  moreover  (being  moved 
both  by  desire  and  my  own  especial  longing)  I  viewed 
the  whole  situation  thereof  with  care.  Neither  was 
there  anything  which  I  saw  there  that  I  did  believe 
to  be  the  same  which  it  was  indeed,  but  everything 
seemed  unto  me  to  be  transformed  into  other  shapes 
by  the  wicked  power  of  enchantment,  in  so  much  that 
I  thought  the  stones  against  which  I  might  stumble 
were  indurate  and  turned  from  men  into  that  figure, 
and  that  the  birds  which  I  heard  chirping,  and  the 
trees  without  the  walls  of  the  city,  and  the  running 
waters  were  changed  from  men  into  such  feathers 
and  leaves  and  fountains.  And  further  I  thought 
that  the  statues  and  images  would  by  and  by  move, 
and  that  the  walls  would  talk,  and  the  kine  and 
other  brute  beasts  would  speak  and  tell  strange  news, 
and  that  immediately  I  should  hear  some  oracle  from 
the  heaven  and  from  the  ray  of  the  sun. 

D  4" 


Sic  attonituSj  immo  vero  cruciabili  desiderio 
stupidus,  nullo  quidem  initio  vel  omnino  vestigio 
cupidinis  meae  reperto  cuncta  circumibam  tamen, 
dum  luxum  nepotalem  simulantia1  ostiatim  singula 
pererro,  repente  me  nescius  forum  cupidinis  intuli ; 
et  ecce  mulierem  quampiam  frequenti  stipatam 
famulitione  ibidem  gradientem  accelerate  vestigio 
comprehendo :  aurum  in  gemmis  et  in  tunicis,  ibi 
inflexum,  hie  intextum,  matronam  profecto  confite- 
batur.  Huius  adhaerebat  lateri  senex  iam  gravis  in 
annis,  qui.  ut  primum  me  conspexit,  "  Est "  inquit 
"  Hercule  Lucius/'  et  offert  osculum  et  statim  in- 
certum  quidnam  in  aurern  mulieris  obganniit. 
"  Quin  "  inquit  "  Etiam  ipse  parentem  tuam  accedis  et 
salutas  ?  "  "  Vereor"  inquam  "  Ignotae  mihi  feminae," 
et  statim  rubore  suffusus  deiecto  capite  restiti.  At 
ilia  obtutum  in  me  conversa  "En"  inquit  "  Sanctis- 
simae  Salviae  matris  generosa  probitas.  Sed  et  cetera 
corporis  execrabiliter  ad  regulam  sunt  congruentia: 
inenormis  proceritas,  succulenta  gracilitas,  rubor 
temperatus,  flavum  et  inafFectatum  capillitium,  oculi 
caesii  quidem  sed  vigiles  et  in  aspectu  micantes, 
prorsus  aquilinij  os  quoquoversum  noridum^  speciosus 
et  immeditatus  incessus." 

Et  adiecit  "Ego  te,  O  Luci,  meis  istis  maiiibus 
educavi ;  quidni  ?  Parentis  tuae  non  modo  sanguinis^ 
verum  alimoniarum  etiam  socia ;  nam  et  familia 
Plutarchi  ambae  prognatae  sumus,  et  eandem  nu- 

l  There  is  here  a  gap  in  the  MSS  which  has  been  filled 
in  by  a  later  hand.  These  three  words  are  fairly  near  the 
meaningless  MsS'  reading,  and  can  be  construed. 



Thus  being  astonished  and  dismayed,  nay  dumb- 
founded with  the  longing  that  did  torment  me,  though 
I  found  no  beginning  nor  indeed  any  trace  to  satisfy 
my  curious  desire,  I  went  nevertheless  from  door  to 
door,  and  at  length,  like  some  luxurious  person 
strolling  at  my  ease,  I  fortuned  unawares  to  come 
into  the  market-place,  where  I  espied  a  certain 
woman  accompanied  with  a  great  many  servants, 
walking  apace,  towards  whom  I  drew  nigh  and 
viewed  her  precious  stones  set  with  gold  and  her 
garments  woven  with  the  same  in  such  sort  that  she 
seemed  to  be  some  noble  matron :  and  there  was  an 
old  man  which  followed  her  :  who  (as  soon  as  he  had 
espied  me)  said  :  "  Verily  this  is  Lucius,"  and  then 
he  came  and  embraced  me,  and  by  and  by  he  went 
unto  his  mistress,  and  whispered  in  her  ear,  and 
came  to  me  again,  saying :  "  How  is  it,  Lucius,  that 
you  will  not  salute  your  dear  cousin  and  friend  ?  " 
To  whom  I  answered  :  "  Sir,  I  dare  not  be  so  bold 
as  to  take  acquaintance  of  an  unknown  woman." 
Howbeit  as  half  ashamed  with  blushes  and  hanging 
head  I  drew  back,  she  turned  her  gaze  upon  me  and 
said  :  "  Behold  how  he  resembleth  the  same  noble 
dignity  as  his  modest  mother  Salvia  doth;  behold 
his  countenance  and  body  agreeing  thereto  in  each 
point,  behold  his  comely  stature,  his  graceful  slender- 
ness,  his  delicate  colour,  his  hair  yellow  and  not  too 
foppishly  dressed,  his  grey  and  quick  eyes  shining 
like  unto  the  eagle's,  his  blooming  countenance  in 
all  points,  and  his  grave  and  comely  gait."  And 
moreover  she  said  :  "  O  Lucius,  I  have  nourished 
thee  with  mine  own  proper  hands,  and  why  not  ? 
For  I  am  not  only  of  kindred  unto  thy  mother  by 
blood,  but  also  her  foster-sister ;  for  we  are  both 
descended  of  the  line  of  Plutarch,  sucked  the  same 


tricem  simul  bibimus,  et  in  nexu  germanitatis  una 
coaluimus  :  nee  aliud  nos  quam  dignitas  discernit, 
quod  ilia  clarissimas,  ego  privatas  nuptias  fecerimus. 
Ego  sum  Byrrhaena  ilia,  cuius  forte  saepicule  nomen 
inter  tuos  frequentatum  educatores  retines.  Accede 
itaque  hospitium  fiducia,  immo  vero  iam  tuum  pro- 
prium  Larem."  Ad  haec  ego,  iam  sermonis  ipsius 
mora  rubore  digesto,  "Absit"  inquam  "  Parens,  ut 
Milonem  hospitem  sine  ulla  querela  deseram  ;  sed 
plane  quod  officiis  integris  potest  effici,  curabo  sedulo: 
quoties  itineris  huius  ratio  nascetur,  numquam  erit  ut 
non  apud  te  devertar." 

Dum  hunc  et  huiusmodi  sermonem  altercamur, 
paucis  admodum  confectis  passibus  ad  domum  Byr- 
4  rhaenae  pervenimus.  Atria  longe  pulcherrima  co- 
lumnis  quadrifariam  per  singulos  angulos  stantibus 
attolerabant  statuas,  palmaris  deae  facies,  quae  pinnis 
explicitis  sine  gressu,  pilae  volubilis  instabile  ves- 
tigium plantis  roscidis  delibantes,1  nee  ut  maneant 
inhaerent,  et  iam  volare  creduntur.  Ecce  lapis 
Parius  in  Dianam  factus  tenet  libi-atam  totius  loci 
medietatem,  signum  perfecte  luculentum,  veste  re- 
natum,  procursu  vegetum,  introeuntibus  obvium  et 
maiestate  numinis  venerabile  :  canes  utrimquesecus 
deae  latera  muniunt,  qui  canes  et  ipsi  lapis  erant ; 
his  oculi  minantur,  aures  rigent,  nares  hiant,  ora 
saeviunt  et  sicunde  de  proximo  latratus  ingruerit, 

i  Colvin's    emendation   for    the  MSS'   decitantea.     Helm 
suggests  detinentes. 



paps,  and  were  brought  up  together  as  sisters  in  one 
house ;  and  further  there  is  no  other  difference 
between  us  two,  but  that  she  is  married  more 
honourably  than  I  :  I  am  the  same  Byrrhaena  whom 
you  have  perhaps  often  heard  named  as  one  of  those 
that  reared  you.  Wherefore  I  pray  you  to  come 
with  all  confidence  to  my  house— nay,  use  it  as  your 
own."  By  whose  words  my  blushes  had  time  to 
disperse,  and  I  said  :  "  God  forbid,  cousin,  that  I 
should  forsake  mine  host  Milo  without  any  just  and 
reasonable  cause,  but  verily  I  will  do  as  much  as 
I  may  without  hurt  to  the  duties  of  a  guest,  and 
as  often  as  I  have  occasion  to  pass  by  your  house  I 
will  come  and  see  how  you  do." 

While  we  went  talking  thus  together,  in  a  very 
few  steps  we  came  to  her  house ;  and  behold  the 
court  of  the  same  was  very  beautiful  set  with  pillars 
quadrangularwise,  on  the  top  whereof  were  placed 
carven  statues  and  images  of  the  goddess  of  Victory, 
so  lively  and  with  such  excellency  portrayed  and  with 
wings  spread  forth,  their  dewy  feet  just  poised  upon 
motionless  globes,  that  you  would  verily  have  thought 
that  they  had  flown,  and  were  hovering  with  their 
wings  hither  and  thither.  There  also  the  image  ol 
Diana,  wrought  in  white  marble,  stood  in  the  midst 
of  all,  holding  all  in  balance,  which  was  a  marvellous 
sight  to  see,  for  she  seemed  as  though  the  wind  did 
blow  up  her  garments,  striding  briskly  forward,  so 
that  she  was  now  to  encounter  with  them  that  came 
into  the  house,  a  goddess  very  venerable  and  majestic 
to  see :  on  each  side  of  her  were  dogs  made  also  of 
stone,  that  seemed  to  menace  with  their  fiery  eyes, 
their  pricked  ears,  their  wide  nostrils  and  their 
grinning  teeth,  in  such  sort  that  if  any  dogs  in 
the  neighbourhood  had  bayed  and  barked,  you 



eum  putabis  de  faucibus  lapidis  exire,  et,  in  quo 
summum  specimen  operae  fabrilis  egregius  ille  signi- 
fex  prodidit,  sublatis  canibus  in  pectus  arduis  pedes 
imi  resistunt,  currunt  priores.  Pone  tergum  deae 
saxum  insurgit  in  speluncae  modum,  muscis  et  herbis 
et  foliis  et  virgulis  et  sicubi  pampinis  et  arbusculis 
alibi  de  lapide  florentibus :  splendet  intus  umbra 
signi  de  nitore  lapidis.  Sub  extrema  saxi  margine 
poma  et  uvae  faberrime  politae  dependent,  quas  ars 
aemula  naturae  veritati  similes  explicuit ;  putes  ad 
cibura  inde  quaedam,  cum  mustulentus  autumnus 
maturum  colorem  afflaverit,  posse  decerpi,  et  si 
fontem,  qui  deae  vestigio  discurrens  in  leiiem  vibra- 
tur  undam,  pronus  aspexeris,  credes  illos  ut  rure 
pendentes  racemos  inter  cetera  veritatis  nee  agita- 
tionis  officio  carere.  Inter  medias  frondes  lapidis 
Actaeon  curioso  obtutu  in  deam  sursum  proiectus, 
iam  in  cervum  ferinus  et  in  saxo  simul  et  in  fonte 
loturam  Dianam  opperiens  visitur. 

5  Dum  haec  identidem  rimabundus  eximie  delector, 
"  Tua  sunt  "  ait  Byrrhaena  "  Cuncta  quae  vides  "  ;  et 
cum  dicto  ceteros  omnes  sermone  secreto  decedere 
praecipit.  Quibus  dispulsis  omnibus,  "  Per  hanc  "  in- 
quit  "  Deam,  O  Luci  carissime,  ut  anxie  tibi  metuo  et 


would  have  thought  the  sound  came  from  their  stony 
throats.  And  moreover  (which  was  a  greater  marvel 
to  behold)  the  excellent  carver  and  deviser  of  this 
work  had  fashioned  the  dogs  to  stand  up  fiercely 
with  their  former  feet  ready  to  sun,  and  their  hinder 
feet  set  firmly  on  the  ground.  Behind  the  back  of 
the  goddess  was  carved  a  stone  rising  in  manner  of 
a  cavern,  environed  with  moss,  herbs,  leaves,  sprigs, 
green  branches,  and  boughs  of  vines  growing  in  and 
about  the  same,  and  within  the  image  of  the  statue 
glistened  and  shone  marvellously  upon  the  stone  ; 
under  the  brim  of  the  rock  hung  apples  and  grapes 
polished  finely,  wherein  art  (envying  nature)  shewed 
its  great  cunning :  for  they  were  so  lively  set  out 
that  you  would  have  thought  that  now  autumn,  the 
season  of  wine,  had  breathed  upon  them  the  colour 
of  ripeness,  and  that  they  might  have  been  pulled 
and  eaten  ;  and  if,  bending  down,  thou  didst  behold 
the  running  water,  which  seemed  to  spring  and  leap 
under  the  feet  of  the  goddess,  thou  mightest  mark  the 
grapes  which  hung  down  and  seemed  even  to  move 
and  stir  like  the  very  grapes  of  the  vine.  Moreover 
amongst  the  branches  of  the  stone  appeared  the 
image  of  Acteon  looking  eagerly  upon  the  goddess : 
and  both  in  the  stream  and  in  the  stone  he  might  be 
seen  already  beginning  to  be  turned  into  a  hart  as  he 
waited  to  spy  Diana  bathe. 

And  while  I  was  greatly  delighted  with  exploring 
the  view  of  these  things,  Byrrhaena  spake  to  me 
and  said:  "Cousin,  all  things  here  be  at  your 
commandment."  And  therewithal  she  willed  all 
the  residue  to  depart  from  our  secrqt  conference, 
who  being  gone  she  said :  "  My  most  dear  cousin 
Lucius,  I  swear  by  this  goddess  Diana  that  I  do 
greatly  fear  for  your  safety,  and  am  as  careful  for  you 



ut  pote  pigiiori  raeo  longe  provisum  cupio ;  cave  tibi, 
sed  cave  for  liter,  a  mails  artibus  et  facinorosis  illece- 
bris  Pamphiles  illius,  quae  cum  Milone  isto,  quern 
dicis  hospitem,  nupta  est :  maga  primi  nominis  et 
omnis  carminis  sepulchralis  magistra  creditur,  quae 
surculis  et  lapillis  et  id  genus  frivolis  inhalatis  omnem 
istam  lucem  mundi  sideralis  imis  Tartari  et  in  vetus- 
tum  chaos  submergere  novit.  Nam  simul  quemque 
conspexerit  speciosae  formae  iuvenem,  venustate  eius 
sumitur  et  illico  in  eum  et  oculum  et  animum  detor- 
quet :  serit  blanditias,  invadit  spiritum,  amoris  pro- 
fundi  pedicis  aeternis  alligat.  Tune  minus  morigeros 
et  viles  fastidio  in  saxa  et  in  pecua  et  quodvis 
animal  puncto  reformat,  alios  vero  prorsus  extinguit. 
Haec  tibi  trepido  et  cavenda  censeo  :  nam  et  ilia 
urit  perpetuum  et  tu  per  aetatem  et  pulchritu- 
dinem  capax  eius  es."  Haec  mecum  Byrrhaena  satis 

6  At  ego  curiosus  alioquin,  ut  primum  artis  magicae 
semper  optatum  nomen  audivi,  tantum  a  cautela 
Pamphiles  afui  ut  etiam  ultro  gestirem  tali  magis- 
terio  me  vel  ampla  cum  mercede  tradere  et  prorsus 
in  ipsum  barathrum  saltu  concito  praecipitare.  Fes- 
tinus  denique  et  vecors  animi,  manu  eius  velut  catena 
quadam  memet  expedio  et,  "  Salve  "  propere  addito, 
ad  Milonis  hospitium  perniciter  evolo  ;  ac  dum  amenti 



long  before,  as  if  you  were  mine  own  natural  child ; 
beware  1  say,  beware  of  the  evil  arts  and  wicked 
allurements  of  that  Pamphile  that  is  the  wife  of 
Milo,  whom  you  call  your  host,  for  she  is  accounted 
the  most  chief  and  principal  magician  and  enchantress 
of  every  necromantic  spell :  who,  by  breathing  out 
certain  words  and  charms  over  boughs  and  stones 
and  other  frivolous  things,  can  throw  down  all  the 
light  of  the  starry  heavens  into  the  deep  bottom  of 
hell,  and  reduce  them  again  to  the  old  chaos.  For 
as  soon  as  she  espieth  any  comely  young  man,  she  is 
forthwith  stricken  with  his  love,  and  presently  setteth 
her  eye  and  whole  affection  on  him  :  she  soweth  her 
seed  of  flattery,  she  invadeth  his  spirit,  and  entangleth 
him  with  continual  snares  of  immeasurable  love.  And 
then  if  any  accord  not  to  her  filthy  desire,  so  that 
they  seem  loathsome  in  her  eye,  by  and  by  in  a 
moment  she  either  turneth  them  into  stones,  sheep, 
or  some  other  beast  as  herself  pleaseth,  and  some 
she  presently  slays  and  murders ;  of  whom  I  would 
you  should  earnestly  beware.  For  she  burneth  con- 
tinually, and  you,  by  reason  of  your  tender  age  and 
comely  beauty,  are  capable  of  her  fire  and  love." 

Thus  with  great  care  Byrrhaena  charged  me,  but  I 
nevertheless,  that  was  curious  and  coveted  after  such 
sorcery  and  witchcraft,  as  soon  as  I  heard  its  name, 
little  esteemed  to  beware  of  Pamphile,  but  willingly 
determined  to  bestow  abundance  of  money  in  learning 
of  that  teacher,  and  even  to  leap  of  my  own  accord 
into  that  very  pit  whereof  Byrrhaena  had  warned 
me,  and  so  I  waxed  mad  and  hasty,  and  wresting 
myself  out  of  her  company,  as  out  of  links  or  chains,  I 
bade  her  farewell,  and  departed  with  all  speed  towards 
the  house  of  mine  host  Milo.  Then  as  I  hastened  by 
the  way  like  one  bereft  of  wit,  I  reasoned  thus  with 



similis  celero  vestigium,  "  Age  "  inquam  "  Luci,  evigila 
et  tecum  esto :  habes  exoptatam  occasionem  et  voto 
diutino  potiris.  Fabulis  miris  x  explere  pectus,  aufer 
formidines  pueriles,  comminus  cum  re  ipsa  naviter 
congredere,  et  a  nexu  quidem  venerio  hospitis  tuae 
tempera  et  probi  Milonis  genialem  torum  religiosus 
suspice ;  verum  enimvero  Fotis  famula  petatur  enixe. 
Nam  et  forma  scitula  et  moribus  ludicra  et  prorsus 
argutula  est.  Vesperi  quoque  cum  somno  concederes, 
et  in  cubiculum  te  deduxit  comiter,  et  blande  lectulo 
collocavit,  et  satis  amanter  cooperuit,  et  osculato  t.uo 
capite  quam  invita  discederet  vultu  prodidit,  denique 
saepe  retrorsa  respiciens  substitit.  Quod  bonum  felix 
et  faustum  itaque,  licet  salutare  non  erit,  Fotis  ilia 

Haec  mecum  ipse  disputans  fores  Milonis  accedo 
et,  quod  aiunt,  pedibus  in  sententiam  meam  vado. 
Nee  tamen  domi  Milonem  vel  uxorem  eius  offendo, 
sed  tantum  caram  meam  Fotidem  :  suis  parabat 
viscum  fartim  concisum  et  pulpam  frustatim  con- 
sectam  et  abacum2  pascuae  iurulentae  et  quod  naribus 
iam  inde  ariolabar,  tuccetum  perquam  sapidissimum. 
Ipsa  linea  tunica  mundule  amicta  et  russea  fasceola 
praenitente  altiuscule  sub  ipsas  papillas  succinctula, 
illud  cibarium  vasculum  floridis  palmulis  rotabat  in 
circulum  et  in  orbis  flexibus  crebra  succutiens  et 
simul  membra  sua  leniter  illubricans,  lumbis  sensim 
vibrantibus,  spinam  mobilem  quatiens  placide  de- 
center  undabat.  Isto  aspectu  defixus  obstupui  et 

1 MSS  miseris.  Milesiis  and  mysticis  have  both  been  pro- 

2  The  best  MS  seems  to  read  arnlacu  pascuae  iurulenta, 
from  which  no  meaning  can  be  extracted.  The  suggestion 
given  in  the  text  is  tolerably  near  and  makes  fair  sense. 



myself :  "  O  Lucius,  now  take  heed,  be  vigilant,  have 
a  good  care,  for  now  thou  hast  time  and  place  to 
satisfy  thy  longing,  and  mayest  gain  the  desire  thou 
hast  so  long  nourished  and  fill  thy  heart  with 
marvels.  Now  shake  off  thy  childishness  and  come 
close  to  this  matter  like  a  man,  but  specially  temper 
thyself  from  the  love  of  thine  hostess,  and  abstain 
from  violation  of  the  bed  of  worthy  Milo;  but 
strongly  attempt  to  win  the  maiden  Fotis,  for  she  is 
beautiful,  wanton  and  pleasant  in  talk.  Nay  yester- 
eve  when  thou  wentest  to  sleep,  she  brought 
thee  gently  into  thy  chamber,  and  tenderly  laid  thee 
down  in  thy  bed,  and  lovingly  covered  thee,  and 
kissed  thy  head  sweetly,  and  shewed  in  her  counte- 
nance how  unwillingly  she  departed,  and  cast  her  eyes 
oftentimes  back  and  stood  still ;  then  good  speed  to 
thee  ;  then  hast  thou  a  good  occasion  ministered 
unto  thee,  even  if  it  betide  thee  ill,  to  prove  and  try 
the  mind  of  Fotis." 

Thus  while  I  reasoned  with  myself,  I  came  to 
Milo's  door  persevering  still  in  my  purpose,  but  I 
found  neither  Milo  nor  his  wife  at  home,  but  only 
my  dear  and  sweet  love  Fotis  mincing  pigs'  meat  as 
if  for  stuffing,  and  slicing  flesh,  and  making  pottage 
for  her  master  and  mistress,  and  I  thought  I  smelled 
even  from  thence  the  savour  of  some  haggis  very 
sweet  and  dainty.  She  had  about  her  middle  a 
white  and  clean  apron,  and  she  was  girded  high 
about  her  body  beneath  her  breasts  with  a  girdle  of 
red  shining  silk,  and  she  stirred  the  pot  and  turned 
the  meat  with  her  fair  and  white  hands,  in  such  sort 
and  with  such  stirrings  and  turning  the  same  that  her 
loins  and  hips  did  likewise  gently  move  and  shake, 
which  was  in  my  mind  a  comely  sight  to  see.  These 
things  when  I  saw  I  was  half  amazed,  and  stood 



mirabundus  steti,  steterunt  et  membra  quae  iacebant 
ante.  Et  tandem  ad  illam  "  Quam  pulchre  quamque 
festive  "  inquam  "  Fotis  mea,  ollulam  istam  cum  nati- 
bus  intorques  !  Quam  mellitum  pulmentum  apparas  ! 
Felix  et  certius  beatus  cui  permiseris  illuc  digitum 
intingere !  "  Tune  ilia  lepida  alioquin  et  dicacula 
puella  "  Discede  "  inquit  "  Miselle,  quam  procul  a 
meo  foculo  discede.  Nam  si  te  vel  modice  meus 
igniculus  afflaverit,  ureris  intime  nee  ullus  extinguet 
ardorem  tuum  nisi  ego,  quae  dulce  condiens  et  ollam 
et  lectulum  suave  quatere  novi." 

Haec  dicens  in  me  respexit  et  risit.  Nee  tamen 
ego  prius  inde  discessi,  quam  diligenter  omnem  eius 
explorassem  habitudinem.  Vel  quid  ego  de  ceteris  aio? 
Cum  semper  mihi  unica  cura  fuerit  caput  capillumque 
sedulo  et  publice  prius  intueri  et  domi  postea  perfrui, 
sitque  iudicii  huius  apud  me  certa  et  statuta  ratio, 
vel  quod  praecipua  pars  ista  corporis  in  aperto  et  per- 
spicuo  posita  prima  nostris  luminibus  occurrit,  et  quod 
in  ceteris  membris  floridae  vestis  hilaris  color,  hoc  in 
capite  nitor  nativus  operator  :  denique  pleraeque  in- 
dolem  gratiamque  suam  probaturae  lacinias  omnes 
exuunt,  amicula  dimovent,  nudam  pulchritudinem 
suam  praebere  se  gestiunt,  magis  de  cutis  roseo 
rubore  quam  de  vestis  aureo  col  ore  placiturae.  At 
vero  (quod  nefas  dicere,  ne  quid  sit  ullum  huius  rei 
t&m  dirum  exemplum)  si  cuiuslibet  eximiae  pul- 
cherrimaeque  feminae  caput  capillo  spoliaveris  et 
faciem  nativa  specie  nudaveris,  licet  ilia  caelo  deiecta, 

musing  with  myself,  and  my  courage  came  then  upori 
me  which  before  was  scant.  And  I  spoke  unto  Fotis  at 
last,  and  said  :  "O  Fotis,  how  trimly,  how  merrily,  with 
shaking  your  hips  you  can  stir  the  pot,  and  how 
sweet  do  you  make  the  pottage.  O  happy  and  thrice 
happy  is  he  to  whom  you  give  leave  and  license  to 
dip  his  finger  therein."  Then  she,  being  likewise 
witty  and  merrily  disposed,  gave  answer  :  "  Depart, 
I  say,  wretch,  from  me  ;  depart  from  my  fire,  for  if 
the  flame  thereof  do  never  so  little  blaze  forth  it  will 
burn  thee  inwardly,  and  none  can  extinguish  the 
heat  thereof  but  I  alone,  who  know  well  how  with 
daintiest  seasoning  to  stir  both  board  and  bed." 

When  she  had  said  these  words  she  cast  her  eyes 
upon  me  and  laughed,  but  I  did  not  depart  from 
thence  until  such  time  as  I  had  viewed  her  in  every 
point :  but  why  should  I  speak  of  other  things  ? 
When  as  it  hath  always  been  my  chief  care  both  abroad 
to  mark  and  view  the  head  and  hair  of  every  dame 
and  afterwards  delight  myself  therewith  privately  at 
home,  and  this  is  my  firm  and  fixed  judgement,  for 
that  is  the  principal  part  of  all  the  body,  and  is 
first  open  to  our  eyes ;  and  whatsoever  flourishing 
and  gorgeous  apparel  doth  for  the  other  parts  of  the 
body,  this  doth  the  natural  and  comely  beauty  set 
forth  on  the  head.  Moreover  there  be  divers,  that  (to 
the  intent  to  shew  their  grace  and  loveliness)  will 
cast  off  their  partlets  and  habiliments,  and  do  more 
delight  to  shew  the  fairness  and  ruddiness  of  their 
skin  in  beauty  unadorned  than  to  deck  themselves 
up  in  raiment  of  gold.  But,  though  it  be  a  crime 
unto  me  to  say  it,  and  I  pray  there  may  be  no  example 
of  so  foul  a  thing,  know  ye  that  if  you  spoil  and  cut 
off  the  hair  of  any  woman  and  deprive  her  of  this 
natural  adornment  of  her  face,  though  she  were  never 



mari  edita,  fluctibus  educata — licet,  inquam,  Venus 
ipsa  fuerit,  licet  omni  Gratiarum  choro  stipata  et  toto 
Cupidinum  populo  comitata  et  balteo  suo  cincta, 
cinnama  fragrans  et  balsama  rorans,  calva  processerit, 
placere  non  poterit  nee  Vulcano  suo. 

9  Quid  cum  capillis  color  gratus  et  nitor  splendidus 
illucet  et  contra  solis  aciem  vegetus  fulgurat  vel 
placidus  renitet,  aut  in  contrariam  gratiam  variat 
aspectum,  et  nunc  aurum  coruscans  in  lenem  mellis 
deprimitur  umbram,  nunc  corvina  nigredine  caeruleos 
columbarum  collis  flosculos  aemulatur,  vel  cum  guttis 
Arabicis  obunctus  et  pectinis  arguti  dente  tenui  dis- 
criminatus  et  pone  versum  coactus  amatoris  oculis  oc- 
currens  ad  instar  speculi  reddit  imaginem  gratiorem  ? 
Quid  cum  frequenti  subole  spissus  cumulat  verticem 
vel  prolixa  serie  porrectus  dorsa  permauat  ?  Tanta 
denique  est  capillamenti  dignitas,  ut  quamvis  auro, 
veste,  gemmis,  omnique  cetero  mundo  exornata  mulier 
incedat,  tamen,  nisi  capillum  distinxerit,  ornata  non 
possit  audire. 

Sed  in  mea  Fotide  non  operosus  sed  inordinatus  or- 
natus  addebat  gratiam.  Uberes  enim  crines  leniter 
r'emissos  et  cervice  dependulos  ac  dein  per  colla.  dis- 
positos  sensimque  sinuato  patagio  residentes  paulisper 
ad  finem  conglobates  in  summum  verticem  nodus  as- 

10  trinxernt.     Nee  diutius  quivi  tantum  eruciatum  volup- 



So  excellent  in  beauty,  though  she  were  thrown  down 
from  heaven,  sprung  of  the  seas,  nourished  of  the 
floods,  though  she  were  Venus  herself,  accompanied 
with  the  Graces,  waited  upon  by  all  the  court  of 
Cupids,  girded  with  her  beautiful  scarf  of  love,  sweet 
like  cinnamon  and  bedewed  with  balsam ;  yet  if  she 
appeared  bald  she  could  in  no  wise  please,  no,  not 
her  own  Vulcan.  O  how  well  doth  a  fair  colour 
and  a  brilliant  sheen  agree  with  glittering  hair  !  Be- 
hold it  encountereth  with  the  beams  of  the  sun  like 
swift  lightning,  or  doth  softly  reflect  them  back 
again,  or  changeth  clean  contrary  into  another  grace. 
Sometimes  the  beauty  of  the  hair,  shining  like  gold, 
resembles  the  colour  of  honey ;  sometimes,  when  it 
is  raven  black,  the  blue  plume  and  azure  feathers 
about  the  necks  of  doves,  especially  when  it  is 
anointed  with  the  nard  of  Arabia,  or  trimly  tuffed 
out  with  the  teeth  of  a  fine  comb ;  and  if  it  be  tied 
up  in  the  nape  of  the  neck,  it  seemeth  to  the  lover 
that  beholdeth  the  same  as  a  glass  that  yieldeth  forth 
a  more  pleasant  and  gracious  comeliness.  The  same 
is  it  if  it  should  be  gathered  thick  on  the  crown  of 
the  head,  or  if  it  should  hang  down  scattei'ing  be- 
hind on  the  shoulders  of  the  woman.  Finally,  there 
is  such  a  dignity  in  the  hair,  that  whatsoever  she  be, 
though  she  never  be  so  bravely  attired  with  gold, 
silks,  precious  stones,  and  other  rich  and  gorgeous 
ornaments,  yet  if  her  hair  be  not  curiously  set  forth, 
she  cannot  seem  fair. 

But  in  my  Fotis  not  her  studied  care  thereof  but 
rather  its  disorderliness  did  increase  her  beauty  :  her 
rich  tresses  hung  gently  about  her  shoulders,  and 
were  dispersed  abroad  upon  every  part  of  her  neck 
haii<;i7ig  from  the  nape,  and  fell  fairly  down  enwotind 
in  a  kerchief,  until  at  last  they  were  trussed  up  upon 



tatis  eximiae  sustinere,  sed  pronus  in  earn,  qua  fine 
summum  cacumen  ^apillus  ascendit,  mellitissimum 
ilhid  saviuni  impress!.  Turn  ilia  cervicem  intorsit, 
et  ad  me  conversa  limis  et  morsicantibus  oculis 
"  Heus  tu,  scholastice/'  ait  "  Dulce  et  amarum 
gustulum  carpis.  Cave  ne  nimia  mellis  dulcedine 
diutinam  bilis  amaritudinem  contrahas."  "Quid 
istic  "  inquam  "  Est,  mea  festivitas,  cum  sim  paratus 
vel  uno  saviolo  interim  recreatus  super  istum  ignem 
porrectus  assari  ?"  et  cum  dictoartius  earn  complexus 
coepi  saviari.  lamque  aemula  libidine  in  amoris  pari- 
litatem  congermanescenti  mecum,  iam  patentis  oris 
inhalatu  cinnameo  et  occursantis  linguae  illisu  nec- 
tareo  prona  cupidine  adlibescenti,  "Pereo,"  inquam 
"  Immo  iam  dudum  perii,  nisi  tu  propitiaris."  Ad 
haec  ilia  rursum  me  deosculato  "  Bono  ammo  esto/' 
inquit  "Nam  ego  tibi  mutua  voluntate  mancipata 
sum,  nee  voluptas  nostra  differetur  ulterius,  sed  prima 
face  cubiculum  tuum  adero.  Abi  ergo  ac  te  com- 
para,  tota  enim  nocte  tecum  fortiter  et  ex  animo 
11  proeliabor."  His  et  talibus  obgannitis  sermonibus 
inter  nos  discessum  est. 

Conimodum  meridies  accesserat,  et  mittit  mihi 
Byrrhaena  xeniola,  porcum  opimum  et  quinque  gal- 
linulas  et  vini  cadurn  in  aetate  pretiosi.  Tune  ego 
vocata  Fotide,  "Ecce"  inquam  "  Veneris  hortator  et 
armiger  Liber  advenit  ultro.  Vinum  istud  hodie 
sorbamus  omne,  quod  iiobis  restinguat  pudoris  ig- 
naviam  et  alacrem  vigorem  libidiiiis  incutiat.  Hac 


her  crown  with  a  knot :  then  I,  unable  to  sustain  the 
torture  of  the  great  desire  that  I  was  in,  ran  upon 
her  and  kissed  very  sweetly  the  place  where  she  had 
thus  laid  her  hair  upon  her  crown,  whereat  she 
turned  her  face  and  cast  her  sidelong  and  rolling 
eyes  upon  me,  saying  :  "  O  scholar,  thou  hast  tasted 
now  both  honey  and  gall ;  take  heed  that  the  sweet- 
ness of  thy  pleasure  do  not  turn  into  the  bitterness  of 
repentance."  "  Tush  !  "  quoth  I :  "  My  sweetheart, 
I  am  contented  for  such  another  kiss  to  be  broiled 
here  upon  this  fire "  ;  wherewithal  I  embraced  her 
more  closely  and  began  to  kiss  her.  Then  she 
embraced  and  kissed  me  with  like  passion  of  love, 
and  moreover  her  breath  smelled  like  cinnamon,  and 
the  liquor  of  her  tongue  was  like  sweet  nectar. 
Wherewith  when  my  mind  was  greatly  delighted, 
I  said :  "  Behold,  Fotis,  I  am  yours  and  shall 
presently  die,  nay,  I  am  already  dead,  unless  you 
take  pity  upon  me,"  which  when  I  had  said,  she 
eft  M Kins  kissed  me  and  bade  me  be  of  good  courage. 
"And  I  will,"  quoth  she,  "Satisfy  your  whole  desire, 
and  it  shall  be  no  longer  delayed  than  until  night, 
when  as  (assure  yourself)  I  will  come  to  your 
chamber ;  wherefore  go  your  ways  and  prepare 
yourself,  for  I  intend  valiantly  and  courageously  to 
encounter  with  you  this  night."  Thus  when  we  had 
lovingly  talked  and  reasoned  together,  we  departed 
for  that  time.  .., 

When  noon  was  just  now  come  Byrrhaena  sent  unto 
me  a  present  of  a  fat  pig,  five  hens,  and  a  flagon  of  old 
wine  and  rare.  Then  I  called  Fotis  and  said  :  "  Behold 
how  Bacchus,  the  aider  and  abettor  of  Venus,  doth 
offer  himself  of  his  own  accord  ;  let  us  therefore  drink 
up  this  wine,  that  we  may  do  utterly  away  with 
the  cowardice  of  shame  and  get  us  the  courage  of 
E  65 


enim  sitarchia  navigium  Veneris  indiget  sola,  ut 
in  node  pervigili  et  oleo  lucerna  et  vino  calix 

Diem  ceterum  lavacro  ac  dein  cenae  dedimus  :  nam 
Miloiiis  boni  concinnaticiara  mensulam  rogatus  accu- 
bueram  quam  pote  tutus  ab  uxoris  eius  aspectu, 
Byrrhaenae  monitorum  memor,  et  perinde  in  eius 
faciem  oculos  meos  ac  si  in  Avernum  lacum  forrni- 
dans  deieceram,  sed  assidue  respiciens  praeminis- 
trantem  Fotidem  inibi  recreabar  animi ;  cum  ecce 
iam  vespera  lucernam  intuens  Pamphile,  "  Quam 
largus "  inquit  "  Imber  aderit  crastino/'  et  per- 
contanti  marito  qui  comperisset  istud,  respondit  sibi 
lucernam  praedicei-e.  Quod  dictum  ipsius  Milo 
risu  secutus,  "  Grandem  "  inquit  "  Istam  lucernam 
Sibyllam  pascimus,  quae  cuncta  caeli  negotia  et 
1 2  solem  ipsum  de  specula  candelabri  contuetur."  Ad 
haec  ego  subiciens,  "  Sunt "  aio  "  Prima  huiusce 
divinationis  experimenta,  nee  mirum  licet  modicum 
istum  igniculum  et  manibus  humanis  laboratum, 
memorem  tamen  illius  maioris  et  caelestis  ignis 
velut  sui  parentis,  quid  is  esset  editurus  in  aetheris 
vertice  divino  praesagio  et  ipsum  scire  et  nobis 
enuntiare.  Nam  et  Corinthi  nunc  apud  nos  passim 
Chaldaeus  quidam  hospes  miris  totam  civitatem 
responsis  turbulentat,  et  arcana  fatorum  stipibus 


pleasure,  for  the  voyage  of  Venus  wanteth  no  other 
provision  than  this,  that  the  lamp  may  be  all  the 
night  replenished  with  oil,  and  the  cups  filled  with 

The  residue  of  the  day  I  passed  away  at  the  baths, 
and  then  to  supper,  for  1  was  bid  by  the  worthy 
Milo,  and  so  I  sat  down  at  his  little  table,  so  neatly 
furnished,  out  of  Pamphile's  sight  as  much  as  I  could, 
being  mindful  of  the  commandment  of  Byrrhaena, 
and  only  sometimes  I  would  cast  mine  eyes  upon 
her,  as  if  I  should  look  upon  the  lakes  of  hell ;  but 
then  I  (eftsoons  turning  my  face  behind  me,  and 
beholding  my  Fotis  ministering  at  the  table)  was 
again  refreshed  and  made  merry.  And  behold, 
when  it  was  now  evening  and  Pamphile  did  see  the 
lamp  standing  on  the  table,  she  said :  "  Verily  we 
shall  have  much  rain  to-morrow,"  which  when  her 
husband  did  hear,  he  demanded  of  her,  by  what 
reason  she  knew  it.  "  Marry,"  quoth  she,  "  The  light 
on  the  table  doth  shew  the  same " :  then  Milo 
laughed  and  said  :  "  Verily  we  nourish  and  bring  up 
a  Sibyl  prophesier  in  this  lamp,  which  doth  divine 
from  its  socket  of  celestial  things,  and  of  the  sun 
itself,  as  from  a  watch-tower." 

Then  I  mused  in  my  mind  and  said  unto  Milo : 
"  Of  truth  now  it  is  my  first  experience  and  proof  of 
divination,  neither  is  it  any  marvel,  for  although  this 
light  is  but  a  small  light  and  made  by  the  hands  of 
man,  yet  hath  it  a  remembrance  of  that  great  and 
heavenly  light  as  of  its  parent,  and  by  its  divine 
spirit  of  prophecy  doth  both  know  and  shew  unto  us, 
what  he  will  do  in  the  skies  above :  for  I  knew 
among  us  at  Corinth  a  certain  man  of  Assyria,  who 
by  his  answers  set  the  whole  city  in  a  turmoil,  and 
for  the  gain  of  money  would  tell  every  man  his 



emerendis  edicit  in  vulgus  :  qui  dies  copulas  nup- 
tiarum  affirmet,  qui  fundamenta  moenium  perpetuet, 
qui  negotiatori  commodus,  qui  viatori  Celebris,  qui 
navigiis  opportunus  ;  mihi  denique  proventum  huius 
peregrinationis  inquirenti  multa  respondit  et  oppido 
mira  et  satis  varia  :  nunc  enim  gloriam  satis  floridam, 
nunc  historiam  magnam  et  incredundam  fabulam  et 
libros  me  futurum." 

13  Ad  haec  renidens  Milo  "Qua"  inquit  "Corporis 
habitudine  praeditus  quove  nomine  nuncupatus  hie 
iste  Chaldaeus  est  ?  "  "  Procerus  "  inquam  "  Et 
suffusculus,  Diophanes  nomine."  "  Ipse  est/'  ait 
"  Nee  ullus  alius  :  nam  et  hie  apud  nos  multa  multis 
similiter  effatus  non  parvas  stipes,  immo  vero  mer- 
cedes  opimas  iam  consecutus  fortunam  scaevam,  an 
saevam  verius  dixerim,  miser  incidit.  Nam  die 
quadam  cum  frequentis  populi  circulo  consaeptus 
coronae  circumstantium  fata  donaret,  Cerdo  quid  am 
nomine  negotiator  accessit  eum  diem  commodum 
peregrinationi  cupiens  :  quern  cum  electum  desti- 
nasset  ille,  iam  deposita  crumena,  iam  profusis  num- 
mulis,  iam  dinumeratis  centum  denarium,  quos 
mercedem  divinationis  auferret,  ecce  quidam  de 
nobilibus  adulescentulus  a  tergo  arrepens  eum  lacinia 
prehendit  et  conversum  amplexus  exosculatur  artis- 
sime.  At  ille  ubi  primum  consaviatus  eum  iuxtim 
se  ut  assidat  effecit,  et  attonitus  repentinae  visionis 
stupore  et  praesentis  negotii  quod  gerebat  oblitus, 


fortune :  to  some  he  would  tell  the  days  they 
should  marry  ;  to  others  he  would  tell  when  they 
should  build,  so  that  their  edifices  should  continue  ; 
to  others  when  they  should  best  go  about  their  affairs  ; 
to  others  when  they  should  travel  by  land  ;  to  others 
when  they  should  go  by  sea ;  and  to  me  (enquiring 
of  my  journey  hither)  he  declared  many  things 
strange  and  variable.  For  sometimes  he  said  that  I 
should  win  glory  enough,  sometimes  that  mine 
should  be  a  great  history,  sometimes  an  incredible 
tale  and  the  subject  of  books." 

Whereat  Milo  laughed  again,  and  enquired  of  me 
of  what  stature  this  man  of  Assyria  was,  and  what 
he  was  named.  "  In  faith,"  quoth  I,  "  He  is  a  tall  man 
and  somewhat  black,  and  he  is  called  Diophanes." 
Then  said  Milo  :  "The  same  is  he  and  no  other, who 
likewise  hath  declared  many  things  unto  many  of  us, 
whereby  he  got  and  obtained  no  small  profit,  indeed 
much  substance  and  treasure,  but  fell  at  length,  poor 
wretch,  into  the  hands  of  unpropitious  fate,  or  I 
might  say  fate  unfaithful.  For  being  on  a  day 
amongst  a  great  assembly  of  people,  to  tell  the  by- 
standers their  fortune,  a  certain  merchant  called 
Cerdo  came  unto  him,  and  desired  him  to  tell  when 
it  should  be  best  for  him  to  take  his  voyage,  the 
which  when  he  had  done,  Cerdo  had  already  opened 
his  purse  and  already  poured  forth  his  money  and 
counted  out  a  hundred  pence  to  pay  him  for  the 
pains  of  his  soothsaying ;  whereupon  came  a  certain 
young  nobleman  from  behind  and  took  Diophanes 
by  the  garment,  and  turned  him  about  and  embraced 
and  kissed  him  close,  and  Diophanes  kissed  him 
again  and  desired  him  to  sit  down  by  him.  And 
being  astonished  with  this  sudden  chance,  he  forgot 
the  present  business  that  he  was  doing,  and  said : 



infit  ad  eum  '  Quam  olim  equidem  exoptatus  nobis 
advenis  ?  '  Respondit  ad  haec  ille  alius, '  Commodum 
vespera  oriente  :  sed  vicissim  tu  quoque,  frater,  mihi 
memora  quernadmodum  exinde  ut  de  Euboea  insula 
festinus  enavigasti,  et  mans  et  viae  confeceris  iter.' 

14  Ad  haec  Diophanes  ille  Clialdaeus  egregius,  mente 
viduus  necdum  snus,  '  Hostes '  inquit  '  Et  oinnes 
inimici  nostri  tarn  diram  immo  vero  Ulixeam  pere- 
grinationem  incidant.  Nam  et  navis  ipsa  qua 
vehebamur,  variis  turbinibus  procellarum  quassata, 
utroque  regimine  amisso,  aegre  ad  ulterioris  ripae 
marginem  detrusa  praeceps  demersa  est,  et  nos 
omnibus  amissis  vix  enatavimus.  Quodcunque  vel 
ignotorum  miseratione  vel  amicorum  benivolentia 
contraximus,  id  omne  latrocinalis  invasit  manus, 
quorum  audaciae  repugnans  etiam  Arignotus  unicus 
frater  meus  sub  istis  oculis  miser  iugulatus  est.' 
Haec  eo  adhuc  narrante  maesto  Cerdo  ille  negotiator 
correptis  nummulis  suis,  quos  divinationis  mercedi 
destinaverat,  protinus  aufugit.  r  Ac  dehinc  tune 
demum  Diophanes  expergitus  sensit  imprudentiae 
suae  labem,  cum  etiam  nos  omnes  circumsecus 
astantes  in  clarum  cachinnum  videret  efFusos.  Sed 
tibi  plane,  Luci  domine,  soli  omnium  Chaldaeus  ille 
vera  dixerit,  sisque  felix  et  iter  dexterum  porrigas." 

15  Haec  Milone  diutine  sermocinante  tacitus  in- 
gemescebam,  miiiique  non  mediocriter  suscensebam 


'  O  dear  friend,  you  are  heartily  welcome ;  I  pray 
you  when  arrived  you,  whom  we  have  looked  for  so 
long,  into  these  parts  ?  '  Then  answered  he  :  '  Just 
this  last  evening ;  but,  brother,  I  pray  you  tell  me  of 
your  sudden  coming  from  the  Isle  of  Euboea,  and 
how  you  sped  by  the  way,  both  of  sea  and  land  ?  ' 
Whereunto  Diophanes,  this  notable  Assyrian,  not  yet 
come  unto  his  mind  but  half  amazed,  gave  answer 
and  said  :  '  I  would  to  God  that  all  our  enemies  and 
evil-willers  might  fall  into  the  like  dangerous 
peregrination,  as  troublesome  as  Ulysses'  was,  for 
the  ship  which  we  were  in  (after  that  it  was  by  the 
waves  of  the  sea  and  by  the  great  tempest  tossed 
hither  and  thither,  in  great  peril,  and  after  that  both 
the  rudders  brake  alike  in  pieces)  was  but  just 
brought  to  the  further  shore,  but  sunk  utterly  into 
the  water,  and  so  we  did  swim  and  hardly  escaped  to 
land  with  loss  of  all  that  we  had :  and  after  that, 
whatsoever  was  given  unto  us  in  recompense  of  our 
losses,  either  by  the  pity  of  strangers  or  by  the 
benevolence  of  our  friends,  was  taken  away  from  us 
by  a  band  of  thieves,  whose  violence  when  mine  only 
brother  Arignotus  did  essay  to  resist,  he  was  cruelly 
murdered  by  them  before  my  face.'  While  he  was 
still  sadly  declaring  these  things,  the  merchant  Cerdo 
took  up  his  money  again,  which  he  had  told  out  to 
pay  for  the  telling  of  his  fortune,  and  ran  away  :  and 
then  Diophanes  coming  to  himself  perceived  what  he 
had  done,  how  his  imprudence  had  ruined  him,  and 
we  all  that  stood  by  laughed  greatly.  But  surely,  I 
pray  that  unto  you,  O  Lucius,  did  Diophanes  tell  the 
truth,  if  to  you  alone,  and  may  you  be  happy,  and 
have  a  prosperous  journey." 

Thus  Milo  reasoned  with  me,  but  I  groaned  within 
myself  and  was  not  a  little  sorry  that  I  had  by  my 



quod  ultro  inducta  serie  inopportunarum  fabularum 
partem  bonam  vesperae  eiusque  gratissimum  fructum 
amitterem ;  et  tandem  denique  devorato  pudore  ad 
Milonem  aio  "  Ferat  suam  Diophanes  ille  fortunam  et 
spolia  populorum  rursum  conferat  mari  pariter  ac 
terrae,  mihi  vero  fatigationis  hesternae  etiamnunc 
saucio  da  veniam  raaturius  concedam  cubitum/'  et 
cum  dicto  facesscv,  et  cubiculum  meum  contendo^  atque 
illic  deprehendo  epularum  dispositiones  satis  con- 
cinnas.  Nam  et  pueris  extra  limen,  credo  ut  arbitrio 
nocturni  gannitus  ablegarentur,  humi  quam  procul 
distratum  fuerat,  et  grabatulum  meum  astitit  mensula 
cenae  totius  honestas  reliquias  tolerans,  et  calices 
boni,  iam  infuso  latice  semipleni,  solam  temperiem 
sustinentes,  et  lagoena  iuxta  orincio  caesim  dehiscente 
patescens  facilis  hauritu,  prorsus  gladiatoriae  Veneris 

16  Commodum  cubueram,  et  ecce  Fotis  mea,  iam 
domina  cubitum  reddita,  laeta  proximat  rosa  serta  et 
rosa  soluta  in  sinu  tuberante  :  ac  me  pressim  deoscu- 
lato  et  corollis  revincto  ac  flore  persperso  arripit 
poculum  ac  desuper  aqua  calida  iniecta  porrigit 
bibam,  idque  modico  prius  quam  totum  exsorberem 
clementer  invadit  ac  relictum  pullulatim  labellis 
minuens  meque  respiciens  sorbillat  dulciter.  Sequens 
et  tertium  inter  nos  vicissim  et  frequens  alternat 
poculum,  cum  ego  iam  vino  madens  nee  animo 


own  doing  turned  him  into  such  a  vein  of  talk  so  un- 
seasonably, that  I  was  like  to  lose  a  good  part  of  the 
night,  and  the  sweet  pleasure  thereof,  but  at  length 
I  boldly  swallowed  my  shame  and  said  unto  Milo : 
"  Let  Diophanes  farewell  with  his  evil  fortune,  and 
disgorge  again  to  sea  and  land  that  spoil  that  he 
•wins  from  all  nations,  for  I  verily  do  yet  feel  the 
weariness  of  my  travel  of  yesterday ;  wherefore  I 
pray  you  pardon  me,  and  give  me  license,  being  very 
tired,  to  depart  early  to  bed,"  wherewithal  I  rose 
up  and  went  to  my  chamber,  where  I  found  all 
manner  of  meats  finely  prepared,  and  the  servants' 
bed  (so  that  they  should  not  hear,  methinks,  our 
tattling  of  the  night)  was  removed  far  off  without 
the  chamber  door.  By  my  bed  a  table  was  set,  all 
covered  with  no  small  store  of  such  meats  as  were 
left  at  supper,  generous  cups  were  filled  half  full 
with  liquor,  leaving  room  only  for  enough  water  to 
temper  and  delay  the  wine,  the  flagon  stood  ready 
prepared,  its  neck  opened  with  a  wide  and  smooth 
cut,  that  one  might  the  easier  di*aw  from  it,  and 
there  did  nothing  lack  which  was  necessary  for  the 
preparation  of  Venus. 

Now  when  I  was  just  entered  into  the  bed,  behold 
my  Fotis  (who  had  brought  her  mistress  to  sleep) 
drew  nigh,  with  bunches  of  rose  garlands  and  rose 
blooms  in  her  apron,  and  she  kissed  me  closely  and 
tied  a  garland  about  my  head,  and  cast  the  residue 
about  me.  Which  when  she  had  done,  she  took  up 
a  cup  of  wine,  and  tempered  it  with  hot  water,  and 
proffered  it  me  to  drink,  and  before  I  had  drunk  up 
all,  she  gently  pulled  it  from  my  mouth,  and  sipping 
it  slowly  and  looking  upon  me  the  while,  she  drank 
that  which  was  left,  and  in  this  manner  we  emptied 
the  pot  twice  or  thrice  together.  Thus  when  I  had 



tantum    verum    etiam    corpora     ipso    ad    libidinem 
inquies,  alioquin  et  petulans  et  iam  saucius  paulisper 
inguinum    fine  lacinia  remota  impatientiam  Veneri 
Fotidi    meae    monstrans,  "Miserere,"  inquam    ' 
subveni  maturius :  nam,  ut  vides,  proelio,  quod  nobis 
sine   fetiali  officio  indixeras,  iam   proximante  vehe- 
menter  intentus,ubi  primam  sagittam  saevi  Cupidinis 
in  ima  praecordia  mea  delapsam  excepi,  arcum  meum 
et  ipse  vigorate  tetendi l  et  oppido  formido  ne  nervus 
rigoris  nimietate  rumpatur.       Sed  ut   mihi   morem 
pfenius  gessevis,  in  effusum    laxa  crinem  et^  capillo 
iTfluente   undanter   ede   complexus   amabiles."       Nee 
mora,  cum  omnibus  illis  cibariis  vasculis  raptim  remotis, 
laciniis  cunctis  suis  renudata,  crinibus  quam  dissolutis 
ad  hilarem  lasciviam  in  speciem  Veneris  quae  mari- 
nes fluctus  subit  pulchre  reformata,  paulisper  etiam 
glabellum  feminal  rosea  palmula  potius  obumbrans 
de  industria  quam  tegens  verecundia,  "  Proeliare," 
inquit  "  Et  fortiter  proeliare,  nee  enim  tibi  cedam 
nee  terga  vortam.     Comminus    in    aspectum,  si  vir 
es,  derige  et  grassare  naviter  et  occide  moriturus. 
Hodierna  pugna  non  habet  missionem."     Haec  simul 
dicens,  inscenso  grabatulo  super  me  sessim  residens 
ac   crebra  subsiliens,  lubricisque    gestibus    mobilem 
spinam  quatiens,  pendulae  Veneris  fructu  me  satiavit, 
usque  dum  lassis  animis  et  marcidis  artubus  defatigati 
simul  ambo  corruimus  inter  mutuos  amplexus  animas 
anbelantes.      His  et  huiusmodi   colluctationibus   ad 
confinia  lucis  usque  pervigiles  egimus,  poculis  inter- 
dum  lassitudinem  refoventes  et  libidinem  incitantes 
et  voluptatem  integrantes :  ad  cuius  noctis  exemplar 
similes  astruximus  alias  plusculas. 

1 8       Forte  quadam  die  de  me  magno  ojsere  Byrrhaena 
contendit  apud  earn'  cenulae  ut  interessem,  et  cum 

1  So  Bursian  for  the  MSS'  vigor  attetendit. 


well  replenished  myself  with  wine,  and  was  now- 
ready  not  only  in  mind  but  also  in  body,  I  shewed  to 
Fotis  my  great  impatience  and  said  :  "  O  my  sweet- 
heart, take  pity  upon  me  and  help  me  :  for  as  you 
see,  I  am  prepared  unto  the  battle  now  approaching 
which  yourself  did  appoint  without  the  herald's  aid, 
for  after  that  I  felt  the  first  arrow  of  cruel  Cupid 
within  my  breast  I  bent  my  bow  very  strong,  and 
now  fear  (because  it  is  bended  so  hard)  lest  the 
string  should  break  :  but  that  thou  mayest  the  better 
please  me,  unbrace  thy  hair  and  come  and  embrace 
me  lovingly  "  ;  wherewithal  she  made  no  long  delay, 
but  set  aside  all  the  meat  and  wine,  and  then  un- 
apparelled  herself  and  unattired  her  hair,  presenting 
her  amiable  body  unto  me  in  manner  of  fair  Venus, 
when  she  goeth  under  the  waves  of  the  sea.  "  Now," 
quoth  she,  "  Is  come  the  hour  of  jousting,  now  is 
come  the  time  of  war,  wherefore  shew  thyself  like 
unto  a  man,  for  I  will  not  retire,  I  will  not  fly  the 
field ;  see  then  thou  be  valiant,  see  thou  be  coura- 
geous, since  there  is  no  time  appointed  when  our 
skirmish  shall  cease."  In  saying  these  words  she 
came  to  me,  and  embraced  me  sweetly,  and  so  we 
passed  all  the  night  in  pastime  and  pleasure,  and 
never  slept  till  it  was  day ;  but  we  would  ever 
refresh  our  weariness  and  provoke  our  pleasure  by 
drinking  of  wine.  In  which  sort  we  pleasantly  passed 
many  nights  following. 

It  fortuned  on  a  day  that  Byrrhaena  desired  me  to 
sup  with  her,  and  she  would  in  no  wise   take  any 



impendio  excusarem,  uegavit  veniam.  Ergo  igitur 
Fotis  erat  adeunda  deque  nutu  eius  consilium  velut 
auspicium  petendum :  quae  quanquam  invita  quod  a 
se  ungue  latius  digrederer,  tamen  comiter  amatoriae 
militiae  brevem  commeatum  indulsit.  Sed  "  Heus 
tu "  inquit  "  Cave  regrediare  cena  maturius :  nam 
vesana  factio  nobilissimorum  iuvenum  pacem  publi- 
cam  infestat :  passim  trucidatos  per  medias  plateas 
videbis  iacere,  nee  praesidis  auxilia  longinqua  levare 
civitatem  tanta  clade  possunt.  Tibi  vero  fortunae 
splendor  insidias,  contemptus  etiam  peregrinationis 
poterit  afferre."  "Fac  sine  cura"  inquam  "Sis, 
Fotis  mea:  nam  praeter  quod  epulis  alienis  volup- 
tates  meas  anteferrem,  metum  etiam  istum  tibi  demam 
maturata  regressione.  Nee  tamen  incomitatus  ibo  : 
nam  gladiolo  soli  to  cinctus  altrinsecus  ipse  salutis 
meae  praesidia  gestabo."  Sic  paratus  cenae  me 

19  Frequens  ibi  numerus  epulonum  et  utpote  apud 
primatem  feminam  flos  ipse  civitatis.  Mensae  opi- 
pare  citro  et  ebore  nitentes,  lecti  aureis  vestibus 
intecti,  ampli  calices  variae  quidem  gratiae  sed  pre- 
tiositatis  unius.  Hie  vitrum  fabre  sigillatum,  ibi 
crystallum  impunetum,  argentum  alibi  clarum  et 
aurum  fulgurans  et  succinum  mire  cavatum  et  lapides 
ut  bibas,  et  quicquid  fieri  non  potest.  ibi  est.  Diri- 
bitores  plusculi  splendide  amicti  fercula  copiosa 


excuse.  Whereupon  I  must  go  unto  Fotis  to  ask 
counsel  of  her  as  of  some  divine,  who  (although  she 
was  unwilling  that  I  should  depart  one  foot  from  her 
company)  yet  at  length  she  gave  me  license  to  be 
absent  for  a  while  from  amorous  debate,  saying  : 
"  Look  you,  beware  that  you  tarry  not  long  at  supper 
there,  for  there  is  a  rabble  of  well-born  youths  that 
disturbeth  the  public  peace,  and  you  may  see  many 
murdered  about  in  the  streets,  neither  can  the  armies 
of  the  governor,  for  that  they  are  afar  ofi,  rid  the  city 
of  this  great  plague.  And  they  will  the  sooner  set 
upon  you,  by  reason  of  your  high  station  and  for 
that  they  will  disdain  you  being  a  foreigner."  Then 
I  answered  and  said :  "  Have  no  care  for  me,  Fotis, 
for  I  esteem  the  pleasure  which  I  have  with  thee 
above  the  dainty  meat  that  I  eat  abroad,  and  I  will 
take  away  that  fear  that  you  have  by  returning  again 
quickly.  Nevertheless,  I  mind  not  to  go  without 
company,  for  I  have  here  my  sword  by  my  side, 
whereby  I  hope  to  defend  myself." 

And  so  in  this  sort  I  went  to  supper,  and  behold 
I  found  at  Byrrhaena's  house  a  great  company  of 
strangers,  the  very  flower  of  the  citizens,  for  that  she 
was  one  of  the  chief  and  principal  women  of  the  city. 
The  tables  (made  of  citron-wood  and  ivory)  were 
richly  adorned,  the  couches  spread  with  cloth  of 
gold,  the  cups  were  great  and  garnished  preciously 
in  sundry  fashion,  but  were  of  like  estimation  and 
price :  here  stood  a  glass  gorgeously  wrought,  there 
stood  another  of  crystal  finely  chased,  there  stood  a 
cup  of  glittering  silver,  and  here  stood  another  of 
shining  gold,  and  here  was  another  of  amber  arti- 
ficially carved,  and  precious  stones  made  to  drink  out 
of;  finally,  there  were  all  things  that  might  never  be 
found.  A  crowd  of  servitors  brought  orderly  the 


scitule  subministrare,  pueri  calami  strati  pulchre  in- 
dusiati  gemmas  formatas  in  pocula  vini  vetusti  fre- 
quenter offerre. 

lam  illatis  luminibus  epularis  sermo  percrebruit, 
iam  risus  affluens  et  ioci  liberales  et  cavillus  hinc 
inde ;  turn  infit  ad  me  Byrrhaena :  "  Quam  com- 
mode versaris  in  nostra  patria  ?  Quod  sciam,  templis 
et  lavacris  et  ceteris  operibus  longe  cunctas  civitates 
antecellimus,  utensilium  praeterea  poll  emus  affatim. 
Certe  libertas  otioso,  et  negotioso  quidem  advenae 
Romana  frequentia,  modesto  vero  hospiti  quies  villa- 
tica ;  omni  denique  provinciae  voluptarii  secessus 
20  sumus."  Ad  haec  ego  subiciens  :  "  Vera  memoras,  nee 
usquam  gentium  magis  me  liberum  quam  hie  fuisse 
credidi.  Sed  oppido  formido  caecas  et  inevitabiles 
latebras  magicae  disciplinae :  nam  ne  mortuorum 
quidem  sepulchra  tutadicuntur  sed  ex  bustis  et  rogis 
reliquiae  quaedam  et  cadaverum  praesegmina  ad 
exitiabiles  viventium  fortunas  petuntur ;  et  canta- 
trices  anus  in  ipso  momento  choragii  funebris  praepeti 
celeritate  alienam  sepulturam  antevortunt."  His 
meis  addidit  alius  :  "  Immo  vero  istic  nee  viventibus 
quidem  ullis  parcitur :  et  nescioqui  simile  passus  ore 
undique  omnifariam  deformato  truncatus  est."  Inter 
haec  convivium  totum  in  licentiosos  cachinnos  effuri- 
ditur,  omniumque  ora  et  obtutus  in  unum  quempiam 
angulo  secubantem  conferuntur  :  qui  cunctorum 


plentiful  meats  in  rich  apparel,  the  pages  curled  and 
arrayed  in  silk  robes  did  fill  great  gems  made  in 
form  of  cups  with  ancient  wine. 

Then  one  brought  in  candles  and  torches :  and 
when  we  were  sat  down  and  placed  in  order  we 
began  to  talk,  to  laugh  and  be  merry.  And  Byrrhaena 
spoke  to  me,  and  said  :  "  I  pray  you,  cousin,  how  like 
you  our  country  ?  Verily  I  think  there  is  no  other 
city  which  hath  the  like  temples,  baths  and  other 
commodities  as  we  have  here  :  further  we  have  abund- 
ance of  household  stuff,  we  have  freedom  for  him 
that  will  rest,  and  when  a  busy  merchant  cometh,  he 
may  find  here  as  many  as  at  Rome  ;  but  for  a  stranger 
that  will  have  quiet  there  is  peace  as  at  a  country- 
house  :  and  in  fine,  all  that  dwell  within  this  province 
(when  they  purpose  to  solace  and  repose  themselves) 
do  come  to  this  city." 

Whereunto  I  answered  :  "  Verily  you  tell  truth,  for 
I  have  found  no  place  in  all  the  world  where  I  may 
be  freer  than  here ;  but  I  greatly  fear  the  blind  and 
inevitable  pits  of  witchcraft,  for  they  say  that  not 
even  the  graves  of  the  dead  are  sate,  but  the  bones 
and  slices  of  such  as  are  slain  be  digged  up  from 
tombs  and  pyres  to  afflict  and  torment  such  as  live  : 
and  the  old  witches  as  soon  as  they  hear  of  the  death 
of  any  person  do  forthwith  go  and  uncover  the  hearse 
and  spoil  the  corpse  before  ever  it  be  buried." 

Then  another  sitting  at  the  table  spoke  and  said  : 
"  In  faith  you  say  true,  neither  yet  do  they  spare  or 
favour  the  living.^  For  I  know  one  not  far  hence 
that  was  cruelly  handled  by  them  and  hath  suffered 
much  with  all  manner  of  cutting  of  his  face "  ; 
whereat  all  the  company  laughed  heartily,  and  looked 
upon  one  that  sat  apart  at  the  board's  end,  who 
being  amazed  at  all  their  gazing  and  angry  withal, 



obstinatione  confusus  indigna  murmurabundus  cum 
vellet  exsurgere,  "  Immo  mi  Thelyphron"  Byrrhaena 
inquit  "  Et  subsiste  paulisper  et  more  tuae  urbanitatis 
f'abulam  illam  tuam  remetire,  ut  et  filius  meus  iste 
Lucius  lepidi  sermonis  tui  perfruatur  comitate."  At 
ille  "  Tu  quidem  domina  "  ait "  In  officio  manes  sanctae 
tuae  bonitatis :  sed  ferenda  non  est  quorundam 
insolentia."  Sic  ille  commotus  ;  sed  instantia 
Byrrhaenae,  quae  eum  adiuratione  suae  salutis  in- 
21  gratis  cogebat  effari,  perfecit  ut  vellet,  ac  sic  aggeratis 
in  cumulum  stragulis  et  effultus  in  cubitum  sub- 
erectusque  in  torum  porrigit  dexteram,  et  ad  instar 
oratorum  conformat  articulum  duobusque  infimis 
coriclusis  digitis  ceteros  erninus  porrigens  et  infesto 
pollice  subfigens  infit  Thelypbron  : 

"Pupillus  ego  Mileto  profectus  ad  spectaculum 
Olympicum,  cum  haec  etiam  loca  provinciae  fami- 
gerabilis  adire  cuperem,  peragrata  cuncta  Thessalia 
fuscis  avibus  Larissam  accessi.  Ac  dum  singula 
pererrans,  tenuato  admodum  viatico,  paupertati  meae 
fomenta  conquiro,  conspicor  medio  foro  procerum 
quendam  senem :  insistebat  lapidem  claraque  voce 
praedicabat,  si  qui  mortuum  servare  vellet^  tie  pretio 
liceretur ;  et  ad  quempiam  praetereuntium  '  Quid 
hoc'  inquam  'comperior?  Hiciiie  mortui  solent 
aufugere  ?  '  '  Tace  '  respondit  ille,  '  Nam  oppido 



murmured  somewhat  and  would  have  risen  from  the 
table  had  not  Byrrhaena  spoken  to  him  and  said : 
"  I  pray  thee,  friend  Thelyphron,  sit  still,  and  accord- 
ing to  thy  accustomed  courtesy  declare  unto  us  thy 
story,  to  the  end  that  my  son  Lucius  may  be  de- 
lighted with  the  pleasantness  of  thy  tale."  To  whom 
he  answered :  "  Ah  dame,  you  are  always  the  same 
in  the  office  of  your  bounty  and  thoughtfulness,  but 
the  insolence  of  some  is  not  to  be  supported."  This 
he  said  very  angrily,  but  Byrrhaena  was  earnest  upon 
him  and  conjured  him  by  her  own  life  that  he  should, 
how  unwilling  soever,  tell  his  tale,  whereby  he  was 
enforced  to  declare  the  same :  and  so  (lapping  up 
the  end  of  the  table-cloth  into  an  heap)  he  leaned 
with  his  elbow  thereon,  and  sat  up  upon  the  couch  and 
held  out  his  right  hand  in  the  manner  of  an  orator, 
shutting  down  the  two  smaller  fingers  and  stretching 
out  the  other  three,  and  pointing  up  with  his  thumb 
a  little,  and  said  : 

"  When  I  was  a  young  man  I  went  from  the  city 
called  Miletus  to  see  the  games  and  triumphs  called 
Olympian,  and  being  desirous  also  to  come  into  this 
famous  province,  after  that  I  had  travelled  over  all 
Thessaly,  I  fortuned  in  an  evil  hour  to  come  to  the 
city  Larissa,  where,  while  I  went  up  and  down  to 
view  the  streets,  to  take  some  relief  for  my  poor 
estate  (for  I  had  spent  near  all  my  money)  1  espied 
a  tall  old  man  standing  upon  a  stone  in  the  midst  of 
the  market-place,  crying  with  a  loud  voice,  and 
saying  that  if  any  man  would  watch  a  dead  corpse 
that  night  he  should  be  rewarded  and  a  price  be  fixed 
for  his  pains.  Which  when  I  heard  I  said  to  one 
that  passed  by  :  '  What  is  here  to  do  ?  Do  dead  men 
use  to  run  away  in  this  country?'  Then  answered 
he  :  '  Hold  your  peace ;  for  you  are  but  a  babe  and  a 
F  81 


puer  et  satis  peregrinus  es,  meritoque  ignoras  Thes- 
saliae  te  consistere,  ubi  sagae  mulieres  ora  mortuorum 
passim  demorsitant,  eaque  sunt  illis  artis  magicae 

22  supplements  '  Contra  ego  '  Et  quae,  tu '  inquam 
'  Die  sodes-,  custodela  ilia  feralis  ?  '  '  lam  primum ' 
respondit  ille  '  Perpetem  noctem  eximie  vigilandum 
est  exertis  et  inconnivis  oculis  semper  in  cadaver 
intentis,  nee  acies  usquam  devertenda,  immo  ne 
obliquanda  quidem,  quippe  cum  deterrimae  ver- 
sipelles  in  quodvis  animal  ore  converse  latenter 
arrepant.  ut  ipsos  etiam  oculos  solis  et  lustitiae 
facile  frustrentur ;  nam  et  aves  et  rursum  canes  et 
mures,  immo  vero  etiam  muscas  induunt.  Tune 
diris  cantaminibus  somno  custodes  obruunt :  nee  satis 
quisquam  definire  poterit  quantas  latebras  nequissimae 
mulieres  pro  libidine  sua  comminiscuntur.  Net 
tamen  huius  tarn  exitiabilis  operae  merces  amplior 
quam  quaterni  vel  seni  ferme  offeruntur  aurei. 
Ehem,  et  quod  paene  praeterieram,  si  qui  non 
integrum  corpus  mane  restituerit,  quicquid  inde 
decerptum  deminutumque  fuerit,  id  omne  de  facie 
sua  desecto  sarcire  compellitur.' 

23  "  His  cognitis  animum  meum  commasculo,  et  illico 
accedens  praeconem  e  Clamare  '  inquam  '  lam  desine  : 
adest  custos  paratus,  cedo  praemium.'  '  Mille '  inquit 
'  Nummum  deponentur  tibi.  Sed  heus  iuvenis,  cave 
diligenter  principum  civitatis  filii  cadaver  a  malis 
Harpyiis  probe  custodias.'  « Ineptias  '  inquam  '  Mihi 


stranger  here,  and  not  without  cause  you  are  ignorant 
how  you  are  in  Thessaly,  where  the  women  witches  do 
bite  off  by  morsels  the  flesh  of  the  faces  of  dead  men, 
and  thereby  work  their  sorceries  and  enchantments.' 
'Then/  quoth  I,  '  In  good  fellowship  tell  me  the 
order  of  this  custody  of  the  dead  and  how  it  is : ' 
'  Marry,'  quoth  he,  '  First  you  must  watch  all  the 
night,  with  your  eyes  staring  and  bent  continually 
upon  the  corpse,  without  winking,  never  looking  off 
nor  even  moving  aside :  for  these  witches  do  change 
their  skin  and  turn  themselves  at  will  into  sundry 
kinds  of  beasts,  whereby  they  deceive  the  eyes  even 
of  the  sun  and  of  very  Justice  ;  sometimes  they  are 
transformed  into  birds,  sometimes  into  dogs  and 
mice,  and  sometimes  into  flies ;  moreover  they  will 
charm  the  keepers  of  the  corpse  asleep,  neither  can 
it  be  declared  what  means  and  shifts  these  wicked 
women  do  use  to  bring  their  purpose  to  pass  :  and 
the  reward  for  such  dangerous  watching  is  no  more 
than  four  or  six  pieces  of  gold.  But  hearken  further, 
which  I  had  well  nigh  forgotten,  if  the  keeper  of  the 
dead  do  not  render  on  the  morning  following  the 
corpse  whole  and  sound  as  he  received  the  same,  he 
shall  be  punished  in  this  sort.  That  is  ;  if  the  corpse 
be  diminished  or  spoiled  in  any  part,  the  same  shall 
be  diminished  and  spoiled  in  the  face  of  the  keeper 
to  patch  it  up  withal.' 

"Which  when  I  heard  I  took  a  good  heart  and 
went  unto  the  crier  and  bade  him  cease,  for  I  would 
take  the  matter  in  hand,  and  so  I  demanded  what  I 
should  have.  '  Marry,'  quoth  he, '  A  thousand  pence  ; 
but  beware  I  say,  young  man,  that  you  do  well 
defend  the  dead  corpse  from  the  wicked  witches, 
for  he  was  the  son  of  one  of  the  chiefest  of  the  city.' 
'  Tush,'  said  I,  '  You  speak  you  cannot  tell  what  ; 



harras  et  nugas  meras.  Vides  hominem  ferreum  et 
insomnem,  certe  perspicaciorem  ipso  Lynceo  vel  Argo 
et  oculeum  totum.' 

"  Vix  finieram,  et  illico  me  perducit  ad  domum 
quampiam,  cuius  ipsis  foribus  obsaeptis  per  quan- 
dambrevem  posticulam  intro  vocat  me  et  conclave 
quoddam  obseratis  luminibus  umbrosum  demonstrat 
matronamque  flebilem  fusca  veste  contectam,  quam 
propter  assistens  fHic  inquit  'Auctoratus  ad  cus- 
todiam  mariti  tui  fidenter  accessit.'  At  ilia  crini- 
bus  antependulis  hinc  inde  demotis  etiam  in  maerore 
luculentam  proferens  faciem.,  meque  respiciens  'Vide 
oro'  inquit  '  Quam  expergite  munus  obeas.'  'Sine 
cura  sis  '  ;  inquam  (  Modo  corollarium  idoneum  com- 
24  para.'  Sic  placito  ocius  surrexit  et  ad  aliud  me 
cubiculum  inducit :  ibi  corpus  splendentibus  linteis 
coopertum  introductis  quibusdam  septem  testibus 
manu  revelat  et  diutine  insuper  fleto  1  obtestata  fidem 
praesentium  singula  demonstrat  anxie,  verba  concepta 
de  industria  quodam  tabulis  praenotante.  '  Ecce ' 
inquit  '  Nasus  integer,  incolumes  oculi,  salvae  aures, 
illibatae  labiae,  mentum  solidum.  Vos  in  hanc  rem, 
boni  Quirites,  testimonium  perhibetote  ';  et  cum  dicto 
consignatis  illis  tabulis  facessit. 

"  At  ego,  '  lube '  inquam  '  Domina,  cuncta    quae 

l  This  is  the  ingenious  suggestion  of  Nic.  Heinsius  for  the 
MSS'  usu  perfleto. 



behold  I  am  a  man  made  all  of  iron,  and  have  never 
desire  to  sleep,  and  am  more  quick  of  sight  than 
Lynceus  or  Argus,  and  must  be  all  eyes.' 

"  I  had  scarce  spoken  these  words,  when  he  took 
me  by  the  hand,  and  brought  me  to  a  certain  house, 
the  gate  whereof  was  closed  fast,  so  that  I  went 
through  a  small  wicket,  and  then  he  brought  me 
into  a  chamber  somewhat  dark,  the  light  being 
shut  out,  and  shewed  me  a  matron  clothed  in  mourn- 
ing vesture  and  weeping  in  lamentable  wise :  and  he 
stood  by  and  spake  unto  her  and  said  :  'Behold  here 
is  one  that  is  employed  to  watch  the  corpse  of  your 
husband  faithfully  this  night.'  Which  when  she 
heard,  she  pushed  aside  her  hair  that  hung  before 
her  blubbered  face  that  was  yet  very  fair,  and  turned 
her  unto  me,  saying  :  '  Mark  you,  young  man,  take 
good  heed  and  see  you  be  vigilant  to  your  office.' 
'  Have  no  care,'  quoth  I,  '  So  that  you  will  give  me 
something  above  that  which  is  due  to  be  given,' 
wherewith  she  was  contented  ;  and  then  rose  and 
brought  me  into  another  chamber,  wherein  the 
corpse  lay  covered  with  white  sheets,  and  she  called 
seven  witnesses,  before  whom  she  removed  the  cloth, 
and  wept  long  over  him,  then  shewed  the  dead  body 
and  every  part  and  parcel  thereof,  and  with  weeping 
eyes  desired  them  all  to  testify  the  matter,  which 
done  she  said  these  words  that  she  had  composed 
of  set  purpose,  while  one  wrote  and  noted  the  same 
in  tables  :  '  Behold  his  nose  is  whole,  his  eyes  safe, 
his  ears  without  scar,  his  lips  untouched,  and  his 
chin  sound :  do  you,  good  citizens,  bear  witness 
hereto ' :  and  then  was  all  inscribed  with  the  hands 
of  the  witnesses  to  confirm  the  same. 

"This  done,  I  said  unto  the  matron:  '  Madam,  I 
pray  you  bid  that  I  may  have  all  things  here 



sunt  usui  necessaria  nobis  exhiberi.'  'At  quae  '  in- 
quit  '  Ista  sunt  ? '  '  Lucerna '  aio  '  Praegrandis  et 
oleum  ad  lucem  luci  sufficiens  et  calida  cum  oeno- 
phoris  et  calice  cenarumque  reliquiis  discus  ornatus.' 
Tune  ilia  capite  quassato  '  Abi '  inquit  '  Fatue,  qui 
in  domo  funesta  cenas  et  partes  requiris,  in  qua  tot- 
iugis  iam  diebus  ne  fumus  quidem  visus  est  ullus. 
An  istic  comissatum  te  venisse  credis  ?  Quin  sumis 
potius  loco  congruentes  luctus  et  lacrimas  ?  '  Haec 
simul  dicens  respexit  ancillulam,  et  '  Myrrhine '  in- 
quit  '  Lucernam  et  oleum  trade  confestim  et  incluso 
custode  cubiculo  protinus  facesse.' 

25  "Sic   desolatus   ad    cadaveds   solacium    perfrictis 
oculis  et  obai-matis  ad  vigilias  animum  meurn  per- 
mulcebam  cantationibus,  cum   ecce   crepusculum  et 
nox  provecta  et  nox  altior  et  dein  concubia  altiora  et 
iam  nox  intempesta,  mihique  oppido  formido  cumu- 
latior    quidem,,    cum    repente    introrepens   mustela 
contra  me  constitit   obtutumque  acerrimum  in   me 
destituit,  ut  tantillula  anirnalis  prae  nimia  sui  fiducia 
mihi  turbarit  animum  :  denique  sic  ad  illam   '  Quin 
abis '  inquam  « Impurata  bestia,  teque  ad  tui  similes 
musculos  recondis,  antequam  nostri  vim  praesentariam 
experiaris  ?     Quin  abis  ? '     Terga  vortit  et  cubiculo 
protinus  exterminatur :  nee  mora,  cum  me  somnus 
profundus  in  imum  barathrum  repente  demergit,  ut 
ne  deus  quidem  Delphicus  ipse  facile  discerneret, 
duobus  nobis  iacentibus,  quis  esset  magis  mortuus  :  sic 
inanimis  et  indigens  alio  custode  paene  ibi  non  eram. 

26  "Commodum  noctis  inducias  cantus  perstrepebat 


necessary.'  -What  is  that?'  quoth  she.  '  Marry,' 
said  1,  '  A  great  lamp  replenished  with  oil,  pots  of 
wine,  and  warm  water  to  temper  the  same,  a  cup, 
and  some  other  dainty  dish  that  was  left  at  supper.' 
Then  she  shook  her  head,  and  said  :  '  Away,  fool  as 
thou  art,  thinkest  thou  to  play  the  glutton  here,  and 
to  look  for  dainty  meats,  where  so  long  time  hath  not 
been  seen  any  smoke  at  all  ?  Cornest  thou  here  to 
revel,  rather  than  weep  and  lament  suitably  to  the 
place  ?  '  And  therewithal  she  turned  back  and 
commanded  her  maiden  Myrrhine  to  deliver  me  a 
lamp  with  oil,  and  to  close  in  the  watcher  and  depart 
from  the  room. 

"Now  when  I  was  alone  to  keep  the  corpse 
company,  I  rubbed  mine  eyes  to  arm  them  for 
watching,  and  to  the  intent  that  I  would  not  sleep 
I  solaced  my  mind  with  singing,  and  so  I  passed  the 
time  till  it  was  dark,  and  then  night  deeper  and 
deeper  still,  and  then  midnight,  when  behold,  as  I 
grew  already  more  afraid,  there  crept  in  a  weasel 
into  the  chamber,  and  she  came  against  me  and  fixed 
a  sharp  look  upon  me  and  put  me  in  very  great  fear, 
in  so  much  that  I  marvelled  greatly  of  the  audacity 
of  so  little  a  beast.  To  whom  I  said  :  '  Get  thee 
hence,  thou  filthy  brute,  and  hie  thee  to  the  mice  thy 
fellows,  lest  thou  feel  my  fingers.  Why  wilt  thou 
not  go  ?  '  Then  incontinently  she  ran  away,  and 
when  she  was  quite  gone  from  the  chamber,  I  fell  on 
the  ground  so  fast  in  the  deepest  depth  of  sleep  that 
Apollo  himself  could  not  well  discern  whether  of  us 
two  was  the  dead  corpse,  for  I  lay  prostrate  as  one 
without  life,  and  needed  a  keeper  likewise,  and  had 
as  well  not  been  there. 

"At  length  the  cocks  began  to  crow  declaring 
night  past  and  that  it  was  now  day,  wherewithal  I 



cristatae  cohortis  ;  tandem  expergitus  et  nimiopavore 
perterritus  cadaver  accurro  et  admoto  lumine 
revelataque  eius  facie  rimabar  singula,  quae  cuncta 
convenerant :  ecce  uxor  misella  flens  cum  hesternis 
testibus  introrumpit  anxia,  et  statim  corpori  super- 
ruens  multumque  ac  diu  deosculata  sub  arbitrio 
luminis  recognoscit  omnia.  Et  conversa  Philo- 
despotum  requirit  actorem  :  ei  praecipit,  bono  custodi 
redderet  sine  mora  praemium,  et  oblato  statim 
'Summas'  inquit  'Tibi,  iuvenis,,  gratias  agimus  et 
Hercule  ob  sedulum  istud  ministerium  inter  ceteros 
familiares  dehinc  numerabimus.'  Ad  haec  ego 
insperato  lucro  diffusus  in  gaudium  et  in  aureos 
refulgentes,  quos  identidem  manu  rnea  ventilabam 
attonitus,  '  Immo '  inquam  '  Domina,  de  famulis  tuis 
unum  putato,  et  quotiens  operam  nostram  desiderabis, 
fidenter  impera.'  Vix  effatum  me  statim  familiares 
omnes  nefarium  exsecrati  raptis  cuiusquemodi  telis 
insequuntur:  pugnis  ille  malas  offendere,  scapulas 
alius  cubitis  impingere,  palmis  infestis  hie  latera 
suffodere.calcibus  insultare,capillos  distrahere,,vestem 
discindere.  Sic  in  modum  superbi  iuvenis  Adonei 
vel  musae  vatis  Pimpleidos 1  laceratus  atque  dis- 
cerptus  domo  proturbor. 

"  Ac  dum  in  proxima  platea  refovens  animum  in- 
fausti  atque  improvidi  sermonis  mei  sero  reminiscor, 

i  The  MSS  found  great  difficulties  in  these  proper  names 
and  had  produced  a  corruption  something  like  Adoni  vel  mvstci 
vatis  Pipletis.  Pimpleidos  is  Beroaldus'  suggestion 


waked  and,  being  greatly  afraid,  ran  unto  the  dead 
body  with  the  lamp  in  my  hand,  and  I  uncovered  his 
face  and  viewed  him  closely  round  about ;  all  the 
parts  were  there :  and  immediately  came  in  .the 
wretched  matron  all  blubbered  with  her  witnesses, 
and  threw  herself  upon  the  corpse,  and  eftsoons 
kissing  him,  examined  his  body  in  the  lamplight,  and 
found  no  part  diminished.  Then  she  turned  and 
commanded  one  Philodespotus,  her  steward,  to  pay 
the  good  guardian  his  wages  forthwith,  which  when 
he  had  done,  he  said  :  '  We  thank  you,  gentle  young 
man,  for  your  pains,  and  verily  for  your  diligence 
herein  we  will  account  you  as  one  of  the  family.' 

"Whereupon  I,  being  joyous  of  my  unhoped  gain, 
and  rattling  my  money  in  my  hand,  as  I  gazed  upon 
its  shining  colour,  did  answer  :  '  Nay,  madam,  I  pray 
you,  esteem  me  as  one  of  your  servitors ;  and  as  often 
as  you  need  my  services  at  any  time,  I  am  at  your 

"  I  had  not  fully  declared  these  words,  when  as 
behold,  all  the  servants  of  the  house  did  curse  the 
dreadful  ominousness  of  my  words,  and  were  assem- 
bled to  drive  me  away  with  all  manner  of  weapons ; 
one  buffeted  me  about  the  face  with  his  fists,  another 
thrust  his  elbows  into  my  shoulders,  some  struck  me 
in  the  sides  with  their  hands,  some  kicked  me,  some 
pulled  me  by  the  hair,  some  tore  my  garments,  and 
so  I  was  handled  amongst  them  and  driven  from  the 
house  even  as  the  proud  young  man  Adonis  who  was 
torn  by  a  boar,  or  Orpheus  the  Muses'  poet. 

"  When  I  was  come  into  the  next  street  to  recover 
my  spirit,  I  mused  with  myself  too  late  mine  unwise 
and  unadvised  words  which  I  had  spoken,  whereby 
I  considered  that  I  had  deserved  much  more  punish- 
ment, and  that  J  was  worthily  beaten  for  my  folly  : 



dignuinque  me  pluribus  etiam  verberibus  fuissfe 
raerito  consentio,  ecce  iam  ultimum  defletus  atque 
conclamatus  processerat  mortuus,  rituque  patrio, 
utpote  unus  de  optimatibus,  pompa  funeris  public! 
ductabatur  per  forum.  Occurrit  atratus  quidam 
maestus  in  lacrimis  genialem  canitiem  revellens 
senex,  et  manibus  ambabus  invadens  torum,  voce 
contenta  quidem  sed  assiduis  singultibus  impedita? 
'Per  fidem  vestram '  inquit  '  Quirites,  per  pietatem 
publicam  perempto  civi  subsistite,  et  extremum 
facinus  in  nefariam  scelestamque  istam  feminam 
severiter  vindicate.  Haec  enim,  nee  ullus  alius. 
miserum  adulescentem,  sororis  meae  nlium,in  adulteri 
gratiam  et  ob  praedam  hereditariam  extinxit  veneno.' 
Sic  ille  senior  lamentabiles  questus  singulis  instrepe- 
bat.  Saevire  vulgus  interdum  et  facti  verisimilitudine 
ad  criminis  credulitatem  impelli :  conclamant  ignem, 
requirunt  saxa,  parvulos  ad  exitium  mulieris  hortan- 
tur.  Emeditatis  ad  haec  ilia  fletibus,  quanique 
sanctissime  poterat  adiurans  cuncta  numina,  tantum 
scelus  abnuebat. 

28  "  Ergo  igitur  senex  ille  :  '  Veritatis  arbitrium  in 
divinam  providentiam  reponamus.  Zatchlas  adest 
Aegyptius,  propheta  primarius,  qui  mecum  iamdu- 
dum  grandi  praemio  pepigit  reducere  paulisper  ab 
inferis  spiritum  corpusque  istud  postliminio  mortis 
animare ' ;  et  cum  dicto  iuvenem  quempiam  linteis 



and  by  and  by  the  corpse  came  forth,  after  the  last 
words  of  farewell  and  lamentation,  which  (because  it 
was  the  body  of  one  of  the  chiefs  of  the  city)  was 
carried  in  funeral  pomp  round  about  the  market- 
place, according  to  the  rite  of  the  country  there. 
And  forthwith  stepped  out  an  old  man  weeping  and 
lamenting  and  tearing  his  venerable  and  aged  hair, 
and  ran  unto  the  bier  and  embraced  it,  and  with 
deep  sighs  and  sobs  cried  out  in  this  sort :  '  O 
masters,  I  pray  you,  by  the  duty  which  you  owe  to 
the  public  weal,  take  pity  and  mercy  upon  this  dead 
corpse,  who  is  miserably  murdered,  and  do  ven- 
geance on  this  wicked  and  cursed  woman  his  wife, 
which  hath  committed  this  fact,  for  it  is  she  and  no 
other  that  hath  poisoned  her  husband,  my  sister's 
son,  to  the  intent  to  maintain  her  adultery  and  to 
get  his  hei'itage.' 

"  In  this  sort  the  old  man  complained  before  the 
face  of  all  the  people.  Then  they,  astonished  at 
these  sayings  and  because  the  thing  seemed  to  be 
true,  began  to  be  very  angry  and  cried  out :  '  Burn 
her,  burn  her,'  and  they  sought  for  stones  to  throw 
at  her,  and  willed  the  boys  in  the  street  to  do  the 
same ;  but  she,  weeping  in  lamentable  wise  with 
feigned  tears,  did  swear  by  all  the  gods  that  she 
was  not  culpable  of  this  crime. 

"Then  quoth  the  old  man:  'Let  us  refer  the 
judgment  of  truth  to  the  divine  providence  of  God. 
Behold  here  is  one  Zatchlas,  an  Egyptian,  who  is 
the  most  principal  prophesier  in  all  this  country, 
and  who  was  hired  of  me  long  since  to  bring  back 
the  soul  of  this  man  from  hell  for  a  short  season, 
and  to  revive  his  body  from  beyond  the  threshold  of 
death  for  the  trial  hereof  ;  and  therewithal  he 
brought  forth  a  certain  young  man  clothed  in  linen 




amiculis  iniectum  pedesque  palmeis  baxeis  inductum 
et  adusque  deraso  capita  producit  in  medium.  Huius 
diu  manus  deosculatus,  et  ipsa  genua  contingens, 
'Miserere'  ait  '  Sacerdos,  miserere,  per  caelestia 
sidera,  per  inferna  numina,  per  naturalia  elementa, 
per  nocturna  silentia,  et  adyta  Coptica,,  et  per  in- 
crementa  Nilotica,  et  arcana  Memphitica,  et  sistra 
Phariaca,  da  brevem  solis  usuram  et  in  aeternum 
conditis  oculis  modicam  lucem  infunde.  Non  obni- 
timur,  nee  terrae  rem  suam  denegamus,  sed  ad  ul- 
tionis  solacium  exiguum  vitae  spatium  deprecamur.' 

"  Propheta  sic  propitiatus  herbulam  quampiam  ob 
os  corporis  et  aliam  pectori  eius  imponit.  Tune 
orientem  obversus  incrementa  solis  augusti  tacitus 
imprecatus  venerabilis  scaenae  facie  studia  praesen- 
tium  ad  miraculum  tantum  certatim  arrexit. 
29  "  Immitto  me  turbae  socium  et  pone  ipsum  lectu- 
lum  editiorem  quendam  lapidem  insistens  cuncta 
curiosis  oculis  arbitrabar  :  iam  tumore  pectus  extolli, 
'  iam  salubris  vena  pulsari,  iam  spiritu  corpus  impleri ; 
et  assurgit  cadaver  et  profatur  adolescens :  '  Quid, 
oro,  me  post  Lethaea  pocula  iam  Stygiis  paludibus 


raiment,  having  on  his  feet  a  pair  of  sandals  of  palm- 
leaves  and  his  crown  shaven ;  and  he  kissed  his 
hands  often  and  touched  even  his  knees,  saying  :  '  O 
Priest,  have  mercy,  have  mercy,  I  pray  thee  by 
the  celestial  planets,  by  the  powers  infernal,  by  the 
virtue  of  the  natural  elements,  by  the  silences  of  the 
night,  by  the  temples  nigh  unto  the  town  of  Coptos, 
by  the  increase  of  the  flood  of  Nile,  by  the  secret 
mysteries  of  Memphis,  and  by  the  rattles  x  of  Pharos: 
have  mercy,  I  say,  and  call  again  to  the  light  of  the 
sun  for  a  short  moment  this  dead  body,  and  make 
that  his  eyes  which  be  closed  and  shut  for  ever, 
may  be  opened  awhile  and  see ;  howbeit  we  mean 
not  to  strive  against  the  law  of  death,  neither  intend 
we  to  deprive  the  earth  of  its  right,  but  (to  the  end 
that  vengeance  may  be  done)  we  crave  but  a  small 
time  and  space  of  life.' 

"  At  this  the  prophet  was  moved,  and  took  a  cer- 
tain herb,  and  laid  it  three  times  upon  the  mouth  of 
the  dead,  and  he  took  another,  and  laid  it  upon  his 
breast  in  like  sort :  thus  when  he  had  done  he 
turned  himself  unto  the  East,  and  made  silently 
certain  orisons  unto  the  proud  and  rising  sun,  which 
caused  all  the  people  to  marvel  greatly  at  the  sight 
of  this  solemn  acting,  and  to  look  for  the  strange 
miracle  that  should  happen. 

"  Then  I  pressed  in  amongst  them  nigh  behind 
the  bier,  and  got  upon  a  stone  to  look  curiously  upon 
this  mystery,  and  behold  incontinently  his  breast  did 
swell,  the  dead  body  began  to  receive  spirit,  his 
principal  veins  did  move,  his  life  came  again,  and  he 
held  up  his  head,  and  spoke  in  this  sort :  '  Why  do 
you  call  me  back  again  to  the  duties  of  this  transitory 
life,  that  have  already  tasted  of  the  water  of  Lethe, 
1  The  sistrum  or  rattle  of  Isis. 


innatantem  ad  momentariae  vitae  reducitis  officia? 
Desine  iam,  precor,  desine,  ac  me  in  meam  quietem 
permitte.'  Haec  audita  vox  de  corpora  ;  sed  aliquanto 
propheta  commotior  (Quin  refers'  ait  'Populo  sin- 
gula,  tuaeque  mortis  iliuminas  arcana  ?  An  non 
putas  devotionibus  meis  posse  Diras  invocari,  posse 
tibi  membra  lassa  torqueri  ? '  Suscipit  ille  de  lectulo 
et  imo  cum  gemitu  populum  sic  adorat  :  '  Malis 
novae  nuptae  peremptus  artibus  et  addictus  noxio 
poculo  torum  tepentem  adultero  mancipavi.' 

"  Tune  uxor  egregia  capit  praesentem  audaciam  et 
mente  sacrilega  coarguenti  marito  resistens  altercat. 
Populus  aestuat  diversa  tendentes :  hi  pessimam 
feminam  viventem  statim  cum  corpore  mariti  sepe- 
liendam,  alii  mendacio  cadaveris  fidem  non  haben- 
30  dam.  Sed  hanc  cunctationem  sequens  adulescentis 
sermo  distinxit ;  nam  rursus  altius  ingemescens 
'  Dabo/  inquit  '  Dabo  vobis  intemeratae  veritatis 
documenta ;  perlucide  quod  prorsus  alius  nemo  cog- 
noverit  indicabo.'  Tune,  digito  me  demonstrans : 
'  Nam  cum  corporis  mei  custos  hie  sagacissimus  exer- 
tam  mihi  teneret  vigiliam,  cantatrices  anus  exuviis 
meis  imminentes  atque  ob  id  reformatae  frustra  sae- 
pius,  cum  industriam  sedulam  eius  fallere  nequivis- 
sent,  postremum,  iniecta  somni  nebula  eoque  in 
profundam  quietem  sepulto,  me  nomine  ciere  non 
prius  desierunt,  quam  dum  hebetes  artus  et  membra 
frigida  pigris  conatibus  ad  artis  magicae  nituntur 


and  likewise  floated  upon  the  waters  of  Styx  ?  Leave 
off,  I  pray,  leave  off,  and  let  me  lie  in  quiet  rest.' 
When  these  words  were  uttered  by  the  dead 
corpse,  the  prophet,  moved  with  anger,  said :  '  I 
charge  thee  to  tell,  before  the  face  of  all  the  people 
here,  the  secret  occasion  of  thy  death.  What? 
Dost  thou  think  that  I  cannot  by  my  conjurations 
call  up  the  Furies  and  by  my  puissance  torment  thy 
weary  limbs  ? ' 

"Then  the  corpse  moved  up  his  head  again,  and 
with  a  deep  groan  thus  made  reverence  unto  the 
people,  and  said  :  '  Verily,  I  was  poisoned  by  the  evil 
arts  of  my  newly  wedded  wife,  and  so  yielded  my 
bed,  still  warm,  unto  an  adulterer.'  Whereat  his  ex- 
cellent wife,  taking  present  audacity  and  reproving 
his  sayings,  with  a  cursed  mind  did  deny  it.  The 
people  were  in  a  turmoil  and  divided  in  sundry 
ways  ;  some  thought  best  the  vile  woman  should 
be  buried  alive  with  her  husband,  but  some  said 
there  ought  no  credit  to  be  given  unto  the  dead 
body  that  spake  falsely  :  which  opinion  was  clean 
taken  away  by  the  words  which  the  corpse  spoke 
again  with  deeper  groaning,  and  said  :  '  Behold,  I 
will  give  you  an  evident  token,  which  never  yet  any 
other  man  knew,  whereby  you  shall  perceive  that  I 
declare  the  truth,'  and  by  and  by  he  pointed  towards 
me  that  stood  on  the  stone,  and  said :  '  When  this, 
the  good  guardian  of  my  body,  watched  me  diligently 
in  the  night,  and  the  wicked  witches  and  enchan- 
tresses came  into  the  chamber  to  spoil  me  of  my 
limbs,  and  to  bring  such  their  purpose  to  pass,  did 
transform  themselves  into  the  shape  of  beasts  ;  and 
when  they  could  in  no  wise  deceive  or  beguile  his 
vigilant  eyes,  they  cast  him  at  last  into  so  dead  and 
sound  a  sleep  that  by  their  witchcraft  he  seemed 



obsequia.  Hie  utpote  vivus  quidem  sed  turn  sopore 
mortuus,  quod  eodem  mecum  vocabulo  nuncupatur, 
ad  suum  nomen  ignarus  exsurgit  et  in  exanimis  um- 
brae modum  ultroneus  gradiens,  quamquam  foribus 
cubiculi  diligenter  occlusis,  per  quoddam  foramen  pro- 
sectis  naso  prius  ac  mox  auribus  vicariam  pro  me  lanie- 
nam  sustentavit :  utque  fallaciae  reliqua  convenissent, 
ceram  in  modum  prosectarum  formatam  aurium  ei 
applicant  examussim  nasoque  ipsius  similem  com- 
parant.  Et  nunc  assistit  miser  hie  praemium  non 
industriaej  sed  debilitationis  consecutus.'  His  dictis 
perterritus  tentare  fortunam  aggredior  :  iniecta  manu 
nasum  prehendo,  sequitur  ;  aures  pertracto,  deruunt. 
Ac  dum  directis  digitis  et  detortis  nutibus  praesen- 
tium  denotor,  dum  risus  ebullit,  inter  pedes  circum- 
stantium  frigido  sudore  defluens  evado.  Nee  postea 
debilis  ac  sic  ridiculus  Lari  me  patrio  reddere  potui,, 
sed  capillis  hinc  inde  laterum  deiectis  aurium  vulnera 
celavi,  nasi  vero  dedecus  linteolo  isto  pressim  aggluti- 
nate decenter  obtexi." 

31  Cum  primum  Thelyphron  hanc  fabulam  posuit, 
compotores  vino  madidi  rursum  cachinnum  integrant. 
Dumque  bibere  solita  Risui  postulant,  sic  ad  me  Byr- 
rhaena  :  "  Solemnis  "  inquit  "  Dies  a  primis  cunabulis 
huius  urbis  conditus  crastinus  advenit,  quo  die  soli 
mortalium  sanctissimum  deum  Risum  hilaro  atque 
gaudiali  ritu  propitiamus.  Hunc  tua  praesentia  nobis 


without  spirit  or  life.  After  this  they  called  me  by 
my  name,  and  did  never  cease  till  the  cold  members 
of  my  body  began  by  little  and  little  to  revive  to 
obey  their  magic  arts  :  then  he,  being  lively  indeed, 
howbeit  buried  in  sleep,  because  he  and  I  were 
named  by  one  name,  rose  up  when  they  called,  and 
walked  as  one  without  sense  like  some  lifeless  ghost : 
and  they,  though  the  door  was  fast  closed,  came  in 
by  a  certain  hole  and  cut  off  first  his  nose  and  then 
his  ears,  and  so  that  butchery  was  done  to  him, 
which  was  appointed  to  be  done  to  me.  And  that 
such  their  subtlety  might  not  be  perceived,  they 
made  him  very  exactly  a  like  pair  of  ears  of  wax,  and 
fitted  it  exactly  upon  him,  and  a  nose  like  his  they 
made  also,  wherefore  you  may  see  that  the  poor 
wretch  for  his  diligence  hath  for  lucre  of  a  little 
money  sustained  loss  of  his  members.' 

"  Which  when  he  had  said  I  was  greatly  astonished, 
and  (minding  to  feel  my  face)  put  my  hand  to  my 
nose,  and  my  nose  fell  off,  and  put  my  hand  to 
my  ears,  and  my  ears  fell  off.  Whereat  all  the  people 
pointed  and  nodded  at  me,  and  laughed  me  to  scorn  : 
but  I  (being  stricken  in  a  cold  sweat)  crept  between 
their  legs  for  shame  and  escaped  away.  So  J,  dis- 
figured and  ridiculous,  could  never  return  home 
again,  but  covered  the  loss  of  mine  ears  with  my 
long  hair  and  glued  this  clout  to  my  face  to  hide  the 
shame  of  my  nose. " 

As  soon  as  Thelyphron  had  told  his  tale  they  which 
sat  at  the  table,  replenished  with  wine,  laughed 
heartily ;  and  while  they  cried  for  a  toast  after  their 
fashion  to  Laughter,  Byrrhaena  spoke  to  me  and 
said  :  "  From  the  first  foundation  of  this  city,  we 
alone  of  all  men  have  had  a  custom  to  celebrate  with 
joyful  and  pleasant  rites  the  festival  day  of  the  god 

o  97 


efficies  gratiorem;  atque  utinam  aliquid  de  proprio  lep- 
ore  laetificum  honorando  deo  comminiscaris,quo  magis 
pleniusque  tanto  numini  litemus."  "Bene"  inquam 
"  Et  fiet  ut  iubes.  Et  vellem  Hercule  materiam  rep- 
perire  aliquam,  quam  deus  tantus  affluenter  indueret." 
Post  haec  monitu  famuli  mei,  qui  noctis  admone- 
bat,  iam  et  ipse  crapula  distentus,  protinus  exsurgo 
et  appellata  prospere  Byrrhaena  titubante  vestigio 
82  domuitionem  capesso.  Sed  cum  primam  plateam  in- 
vadimuSj  vento  repentino  lumen,  quo  nitebamur,  ex- 
tinguitur,  ut  vix  improvidae  noctis  caligine  liberati, 
digitis  pedum  detunsis  ob  lapides,  hospitium  defessi 
rediremus,  dumque  iam  iunctim  proximamus,  ecce 
tres  quidam  vegetes  et  vastulis  corporibus  fores  nos- 
tras  ex  summis  viribus  irruentes  ac  ne  praesentia 
quidem  nostra  tantillum  conterriti,  sed  magis  cum 
aemulatione  virium  crebrius  insultantes,  ut  nobis 
ac  mihi  potissimum  non  immerito  latrones  esse,  et 
quidem  saevissimi,  viderentur.  Statim  denique  gla- 
dium,  quern  veste  mea  contectum  ad  hos  usus  ex- 
tuleram,  sinu  liberatum  arripio,  nee  cunctatus  medios 
latrones  involo  ac  singulis,  ut  quemque  colluctantem 
offenderam,  altissime  demerge,  quoad  tandem  ante 
ipsa  vestigia  mea  vastis  et  crebris  perforati  vulneribus 
spiritus  efflaverint.  Sic  proeliatus,  iam  tumultu  eo 
Fotide  suscitata,  patefactis  aedibus  anhelans  et  su- 
dore  perlutus  irrepo,  meque  statim  utpote  pugna 
trium1  latronum  in  vicem  Geryoneae  caedis  fatigatum, 
lecto  simul  et  somno  tradidi. 

1   The  certain  emendation,  independently  made  by  Salmasius 
and  Rohde,  of  the  MSS'  pugnarium. 



Laughter,  and  to-morrow  is  the  feast,  when  I  pray 
you  to  be  present  to  set  out  the  same  more  honour- 
ably, and  I  would  with  all  my  heart  that  you  could 
find  or  devise  somewhat  merry  of  yourself,  that  you 
might  the  more  honour  so  great  a  god."  To  whom 
I  answered  :  "  Verily,  cousin,  I  will  do  as  you  com- 
mand me,  and  right  glad  would  I  be  if  I  might 
invent  any  laughing  or  merry  matter  to  please  or 
satisfy  Laughter  withal."  Then  at  the  warning  of 
my  servant,  who  told  me  the  night  was  late,  being 
also  well  drunken  with  wine,  I  rose  from  the  table, 
took  leave  of  Byrrhaena,  and  departed  with  tottering 
steps  on  my  homeward  way. 

But  when  we  came  into  the  first  street,  the  torch 
whereunto  we  trusted  went  out  with  a  sudden  gust  of 
wind,  so  that  with  great  pain  we  could  scarce  get 
out  of  this  sudden  darkness  to  our  lodging,  weary 
with  our  toes  stumbling  against  the  stones.  And 
when  we  were  well  nigh  come  to  the  door,  behold  I 
saw  three  men  of  great  stature  heaving  and  lifting 
at  Milo's  gates  to  get  in.  And  when  they  saw  me, 
they  were  nothing  afraid,  but  assayed  with  more 
force  to  break  down  the  doors,  whereby  they  gave 
me  occasion,  and  not  without  cause,  to  think  that 
they  were  strong  thieves.  Whereupon  I  straightway 
drew  my  sword  which  I  carried  for  that  purpose 
under  my  cloak,  and  ran  in  amongst  them,  and 
wounded  them  deeply  as  each  thrust  against  me,  in 
such  sort  that  they  fell  down  for  their  many  and 
great  wounds  before  my  feet  and  gave  up  the  ghost. 
Thus  when  I  had  slain  them  all,  I  knocked,  sweating 
and  breathing,  at  the  door,  till  Fotis,  awaked  by  the 
tumult,  let  me  in.  ,  And  then  full  weary  with  the 
slaughter  of  these  three  thieves,  like  Hercules  when 
he  fought  King  Geryon,  I  went  to  my  chamber  and 
laid  me  down  to  sleep. 


1  COMMODUM     punicantibus    phaleris    Aurora     roseum 
quatiens  lacertum  caelum  inequitabat  et  me  securae 
quieti  revulsum  nox  diei  reddidit.      Aestus  invadit 
animum  vesperni  recordatione  facinoris ;  complicitis 
denique  pedibus  ac  palmulis  in  alternas  digitorum 
vicissitudines   super   genua   connexis    sic    grabatum 
cossim  insidens  ubertim  flebam,  iam  forum  et  iudicia, 
iam  sententiam,  ipsum  denique  carnificem  imagina- 
bundus.      "  An   mihi   quisquam    tarn   mitis    tamque 
benivolus  iudex  obtinget,  qui  me  trinae  caedis  cruore 
perlitum    et   tot  civium   sanguine   delibutum   inno- 
centem    pronuntiare    poterit  ?       Hanc    illam    mihi 
gloriosam     peregrinationem    fore     Chaldaeus     Dio- 
phanes  obstinate  praedicabat." 

Haec  identidem  mecum  replicans  fortunas  meas 
eiulabam :      quati     fores     interdum     et     frequenti 

2  clamore  ianuae  nostrae  perstrepi;    nee    mora,    cum 
magna   irruptione  patefactis   aedibus    magistratibus 
eorumque  ministris  et   turbae   miscellaneae   cuncta 
completa   statimque    lictores    duo    de   iussu   magis- 
tratuum   immissa  manu  trahere  me  sane  non  reni- 
tentem   occipiunt.       Ac    dum    primum  angiportum 


So  soon  as  morning  was  come,  and  Aurora  had  lifted 
her  rosy  arm  to  drive  her  bright  coursers  through  the 
shining  heaven,  and  night  tore  me  from  peaceful 
sleep  and  gave  me  up  to  the  day,  my  heart  burned 
sore  with  remembrance  of  the  murder  which  I  had 
committed  on  the  night  before  :  and  I  rose  and  sat 
down  on  the  bed  with  my  legs  across,  and  clasping 
my  hands  over  my  knees  with  fingers  intertwined  I 
wept  bitterly.  For  I  imagined  with  myself  that  I 
was  brought  before  the  judge  in  the  judgement-place, 
and  that  he  awarded  sentence  against  me,  and  that 
the  hangman  was  ready  to  lead  me  to  the  gallows. 
And  further  I  imagined  and  said  :  "Alas,  what  judge 
is  he  that  is  so  gentle  or  benign  that  he  will  think  I 
am  unguilty  of  the  slaughter  and  murder  of  these 
three  men,  and  will  absolve  me,  stained  with  the 
innocent  blood  of  so  many  of  the  city  ?  Thus 
forsooth  the  Assyrian  Diophanes  did  firmly  assure 
unto  me,  that  my  peregrination  and  voyage  hither 
should  be  prosperous." 

But  while  I  did  thus  again  and  agaiti  unfold  my 
sorrows  and  greatly  bewail  my  fortune,  behold  I 
heard  a  great  noise  and  cry  at  the  door  ;  in  a  moment 
the  gates  were  flung  open,  and  in  came  the  magis- 
trates and  officers,  and  all  their  retinue,  that  filled  all 
the  place,  and  commanded  two  sergeants  to  lay 

insistimus,  statim  civitas  onmis  in  publicum  l  effusa 
mira  densitate  nos  insequitur,  et  quamquam  capite 
in  terrain,  immo  ad  ipsos  inferos  iam  deiecto 
maestus  incederern,  obliquato  tamen  aspectu  rem 
admirationis  maximae  conspicio  ;  nam  inter  tot  milia 
populi  circumstrepentis  nemo  prorsum,  qui  non 
risu  dirumperetur,  aderat.  Tandem  pererratis  plateis 
omnibus  et  in  modum  eorum,  quibus  lustralibus 
piamentis  minas  portentorum  hostiis  circumforaneis 
expiant,  circumductus  angulatim  forum  eiusque 
tribunal  astituor :  iamque  sublimo  suggestu  magis- 
tratibus  residentibus,  iam  praecone  publico  silentium 
clamante,  repente  cuncti  consona  voce  flagitant, 
propter  coetus  multitudinem,  quae  pressurae  nimia 
densitate  periclitaretur,  iudicium  tantum  theatre 
redderetur.  Nee  mora,  cum  passim  populus  pro- 
currens  caveae  consaeptum  mira  celeritate  complevit : 
aditus  etiam  et  tectum  omne  fartim  stipaverant ; 
plerique  columnis  implexi,  alii  statuis  dependuli, 
nonnulli  per  fenestras  et  lacunaria  semiconspicui, 
miro  tamen  omnes  studio  visendi  pericula  salutis 
neglegebant.  Tune  me  per  proscaenium  medium 
velut  quandam  victimam  publica  ministeria  producunt 
3  et  orchestrae  mediae  sistunt.  Sic  rursum  praeconis 
amplo  boatu  citatus  accusator  quidam  senior  exsurgit, 

1  MSS  populum.     This  is  Gruter's  emendation. 


hands  on  me  and  lead  me  to  prison,  whereunto  I 
willingly  obedient ;  and  as  we  came  to  the  mouth  of 
our  lane  all  the  city  gathered  together  in  a  thick 
throng  and  followed  me,  and  although  I  looked 
always  on  the  ground,  nay,  even  to  the  very  pit  of 
death  for  misery,  yet  sometimes  I  cast  my  head  aside, 
and  marvelled  greatly  that  amongst  so  many  thousand 
people  there  was  not  one  but  laughed  exceedingly. 
Finally,  when  they  had  brought  me  through  all  the 
streets  of  the  city,  and  to  every  nook  and  corner,  in 
manner  of  those  as  go  in  procession  and  do  sacrifice 
to  mitigate  the  ire  of  the  gods,  they  placed  me  in  the 
judgement-hall  before  the  seat  of  the  judges :  and 
after  that  the  magistrates  had  taken  their  seat  on  a 
high  stage,  and  the  crier  had  commanded  all  men  to 
keep  silence,  the  people  instantly  cried  out  with  one 
voice  and  desired  the  judges  to  give  sentence  in  the 
great  theatre  by  reason  of  the  great  multitude  that 
was  there,  whereby  they  were  in  danger  of  stifling. 
And  behold  they  ran  and  very  quickly  filled  the 
whole  pit  of  the  theatre,  and  the  press  of  people 
increased  still ;  some  climbed  to  the  top  of  the  house, 
some  got  upon  the  beams,  some  hung  from  the 
images,  and  some  thrust  in  their  heads  through  the 
windows  and  ceilings,  little  regarding  the  dangers 
they  were  in,  so  they  might  see  me.  Then  the 
officers  brought  me  forth  openly  into  the  middle  of 
the  place  like  some  victim,  that  every  man  might 
behold  me,  and  made  me  to  stand  in  the  midst  of 
the  stage.  And  after  that  the  crier  had  made  an 
"  Oyez "  and  willed  all  such  as  would  bring  any 
evidence  against  me  should  come  forth,  there  stepped 
out  an  old  man  with  an  hour-glass  of  water  in  his 
hand,  wherein,  through  a  small  hole  like  to  a  funnel, 
the  water  dropped  softly,  that  he  might  have  liberty 



et  ad  dicendi  spatium  vasculo  quodam  in  vicem  coli 
graciliter  fistulato  ac  per  hoc  guttatim  defluo  infusa 
aqua,  populum  sic  ad  oral : 

"  Neque  parva  res  ac  praecipue  pacem  civitatis 
cunctae  respiciens  et  exemplo  serio  profutura  tracta- 
tur,  Quirites  sanctissimi.  Quare  magis  congruit 
sedulo  singulos  atque  universes  vos  pro  dignitate 
publica  providere,  ne  nefarius  homicida  tot  caedium 
lanienam,  quam  cruenter  exercuit,  impune  com- 
miserit.  Nee  me  putetis  privatis  simultatibus  in- 
stinctum  odio  proprio  saevire :  sum  namque  noc- 
turnae  custodiae  praefectus,  nee  in  hodiernum  credo 
quemquam  pervigilem  diligentiam  meam  culpare 
posse.  Rem  denique  ipsam  et  quae  nocte  gesta  sunt 
cum  fide  proferam  :  nam  cum  fere  iam  tertia  vigilia 
scrupulosa  diligentia  cunctae  civitatis  ostiatim  singula 
considerans  circuinirem,  conspicio  istum  ci-udelis- 
simum  iuvenem  mucrone  destricto  passim  caedibus 
operantem,  iamque  tres  numero  saevitia  eius  inter- 
emptos  ante  pedes  ipsius  spirantibus1  adhuc  cor- 
poribus  in  multo  sanguine  palpitantes.  Et  ipse 
quidem  conscientia  tanti  facinoris  merito  permotus 
statim  profugit  et  in  domum  quandam  praesidio 
tenebrarum  elapsus  perpetem  noctem  delituit ;  sed 
providentia  deum,  quae  nihil  impunitum  nocentibus 
permittit,  priusquam  iste  clandestinis  itineribus 
elaberetur,  mane  praestolatus  ad  gravissimum  iudicii 
vestri  sacramentum  eum  curavi  perducere.  Habetis 

l  So  van  der  Vliet  for  the  MSS'  spirantes. 


to  speak  during  the  time  of  the  continuance  of  the 
water;  and  he  began  his  oration  to  the  people  in 
this  sort : 

"  O  most  reverend  and  just  judges,  the  thing 
which  I  purpose  to  declare  unto  you  is  no  small 
matter,  but  toucheth  the  estate  and  tranquillity  of 
this  whole  city,  and  the  punishment  thereof  may  be 
a  right  good  example  to  others.  Wherefore  I  pray 
you,  most  venerable  fathers,  to  whom  and  to  every 
of  whom  it  doth  appertain  to  provide  for  the  dignity 
and  safety  of  the  common  weal,  that  you  would  in 
no  wise  suffer  this  wicked  homicide  embrued  with 
the  blood  of  so  many  murders  to  escape  unpunished. 
And  think  you  not  that  I  am  moved  by  private  envy 
or  hatred,  but  by  reason  of  mine  office,  in  that  I  am 
captain  of  the  night  watch,  and  I  think  that  until 
this  day  no  man  alive  can  accuse  me  to  be  remiss  in 
the  same.  Now  I  will  declare  all  the  whole  matter, 
orderly,  as  it  was  done  this  last  night.  For  when  at 
about  the  third  watch  of  this  night  past  I  diligently 
searched  every  part  of  the  city,  spying  everything 
close  from  one  door  to  another,  behold  I  fortuned  to 
espy  this  cruel  young  man,  sword  drawn  out  for 
murder,  and  already  three  by  his  fierce  onslaught  dead 
at  his  feet,  their  bodies  still  breathing,  in  a  welter 
of  blood.  Now  this  when  he  had  done  (moved  in 
his  conscience  at  so  great  a  crime)  he  ran  away  and 
aided  by  reason  of  darkness  slipped  into  a  house 
and  there  lay  hidden  all  night ;  but,  by  the  pro- 
vidence of  the  gods,  which  suifereth  no  heinous 
offences  to  remain  unpunished,  he  was  taken  up  this 
morning  before  he  escaped  any  further  by  secret 
ways,  and  so  I  have  brought  him  hither  to  your 
honourable  presence  to  receive  his  desert  accordingly. 
So  have  you  here  a  culpable  homicide,  one  caught  in 




itaque  reum  tot  caedibus  impiatum,  reum  coram 
deprensum,  reum  peregrinum  :  constanter  itaque  in 
hominem  alienum  ferte  sententias  de  eo  crimine, 
quodetiam  in  vestrum  civem  severiter  vindicaretis." 

4  Sic  profatus  accusator  acerrimus  immanem  vocem 
repressit,  ac  me  statim  praeco,  si  quid  ad  ea  respondere 
vellem,  iubebat  incipere.    At  ego  nihil  tune  temporis 
amplius    quam    flere    poteram,    non    tarn    Hercule 
truculentam  accusationem  intuens  quam  meam  mi- 
seram    conscientiam ;    sed    tamen    oborta    divinitus 
audacia  sic  ad  ilia  : 

"  Nee  ipse  ignore,  quam  sit  arduum,  trims  civium 
corporibus  expositis  eum  qui  caedis  arguatur,  quam- 
vis  vera  dicat  et  de  facto  confiteatur  ultro,  tamen 
tantae  multitudinl,  quod  sit  innocens,  persuadere. 
Sed  si  paulisper  audientiam  publica  mihi  tribuerit 
humanitas,  facile  vos  edocebo  me  discrimen  capitis 
•  non  meo  merito,  sed  rationabilis  indignationis  eventu 
fortuito  tantam  criminis  invidiam  frustra  sustinere. 

5  Nam  cum    a   cena   me    serius   aliquanto   reciperem 
potulentus  alioquin,  quod  plane  verum  crimen  meum 
non  diffitebor,  ante  ipsas  fores  hospitii  (ad  bonum 
autem  Milonem  civem  vestrum  devorto)  video  quos- 
dam    saevissimos    latrones    aditum    temptantes    et 
domus  ianuas  cardinibus  obtortis  evellere  gestientes 
claustrisque     omnibus,     quae     accuratissime     affixa 
fuerantj  violenter  evulsis   secum  iam  de   inhabitan- 
tium  exitio  deliberantes.     Unus   denique   et   manu 
promptior  et  corpore  vastior  his  affatibus  et  ceteros 


the  very  act,  and  an  accused  stranger ;  wherefore 
pronounce  the  judgement  against  this  man  being 
an  alien,  even  as  you  would  most  severely  and 
sharply  revenge  such  an  offence  found  in  a  known 

In  this  sort  the  cruel  accuser  finished  and  ended 
his  terrible  tale  :  then  the  crier  commanded  me  to 
speak  if  I  had  anything  to  say  for  myself,  but  I  could 
in  no  wise  utter  any  word  at  all  for  weeping  :  yet 
verily  I  esteemed  not  so  much  his  rigorous  accusa- 
tion, as  I  did  consider  mine  own  miserable  conscience. 
Howbeit  (being  inspired  by  divine  audacity)  at 
length  I  began  to  say  : 

"  Verily  I  know  that  it  is  a  hard  thing  for  him  that 
is  accused  to  have  slain  three  persons,  to  persuade 
you,  being  so  many,  that  he  is  innocent,  although  he 
should  declare  the  whole  truth,  and  confess  the 
matter  how  it  was  in  deed  ;  but  if  your  Honours 
will  vouchsafe  to  give  me  audience,  I  will  shew  you 
that  if  I  be  condemned  to  die,  I  have  not  deserved  it 
by  mine  own  desert,  but  that  I  was  moved  by  the 
fortune  of  reasonable  anger  to  do  that  deed.  For 
returning  somewhat  late  from  supper  yesternight 
(being  well  tippled  with  wine,  which  I  will  not 
deny)  and  approaching  nigh  unto  my  lodging,  which 
was  in  the  house  of  good  Milo,  a  citizen  of  this  city, 
I  fortuned  to  espy  three  great  thieves  attempting  to 
break  down  his  walls  and  gates,  and  to  open  the 
locks  to  enter  in,  by  tearing  away  all  the  doors  from 
the  posts  and  by  dragging  out  the  bolts,  which  were 
most  firmly  fixed ;  and  they  consulted  amongst 
themselves  how  they  would  cruelly  handle  such  as 
they  found  in  the  house.  And  one  of  them  being  of 
more  courage  and  of  greater  stature  than  the  rest, 
spoke  unto  his  fellows,  urging  them  on,  and  said : 



incitabat :  '  Heus  pueri,  quam  maribus  animis  et 
viribus  alacribus  dormientes  aggrediamur.  Omnis 
cunctatio,  ignavia  omnis  facessat  e  pectore  ;  stricto 
mucrone  per  totam  domum  caedes  ambulet :  qui 
sopitus  iacebit,  trucidetur ;  qui  repugnare  tempta- 
verit,  feriatur.  Sic  salvi  recedemus,  si  salvum  in 
domo  neminem  reliquerimus.'  Fateor,  Quirites, 
extremes  latrones  (boni  civis  officium  arbitratus, 
simul  et  eximie  metuens  et  hospitibus  meis  et  mihi) 
gladiolo,  qui  me  propter  huiusmodi  pericula  comita- 
batur,  armatus  fugare  atque  proterrere  eos  aggressus 
sum :  at  illi  barbari  prorsus  et  immanes  homines 
neque  fugani  capessunt  et,  cum  me  viderent  in  ferro, 
6  tamen  audaciter  resistunt.  Dirigitur  proeliaris  acies  : 
ipse  denique  dux  et  signifer  ceterorum  validis  me 
viribus  aggressus  illico  manibus  ambabus  capillo 
arreptum  ac  retro  reflexum  effligere  lapide  gestit ; 
quern  dum  sibi  porrigi  flagitat,  certa  manu  percussum 
feliciter  prosterno.  Ac  mox  alium  pedibus  meis 
mordicus  inhaerentem  per  scapulas  ictu  temperato, 
tertiumque  improvide  occurrentem  pectore  ofFenso 
peremo.  Sic  pace  vindicata,  domoque  hospitum  ac 
salute  communi  protecta,  non  tantum  x  impunem  me, 
verum  etiam  laudabilem  publice  credebam  fore,  qui 
ne  tantillo  quidem  umquam  crimine  postulatus,  sed 

i  Koch's  emendation  for  the  MSS'  tarn, 


'Come,  boys,  take  men's  hearts  unto  you,  and  let  us 
enter  into  every  part  of  the  house,  and  attack  them 
that  slumber  therein.  No  delay,  no  cowardice  in 
your  hearts ;  let  murder  with  drawn  sword  go 
throughout  the  dwelling.  Such  as  we  find  asleep 
let  us  slay,  and  such  likewise  as  resist  let  us  kill,  and 
so  by  that  mean's  we  shall  escape  without  danger  if 
we  leave  none  alive  therein.'  Verily,  ye  judges,  I 
confess  that  I  drew  out  my  sword,  which  I  bore  for 
this  manner  of  danger,  against  those  three  abandoned 
robbers,  willing  to  terrify  and  drive  them  away ;  for 
I  thought  that  it  was  the  office  and  duty  of  one  that 
beareth  good  will  to  this  common  weal  so  to  do, 
especially  since  they  put  me  in  great  fear,  both  for 
myself  and  for  mine  host.  But  when  those  cruel  and 
terrible  men  would  in  no  case  run  away,  nor  fear  my 
naked  sword,  but  boldly  resisted  against  me,  I  ran 
upon  them  and  fought  valiantly.  One  of  them  which 
was  the  captain  and  leader  of  the  rest  invaded  me 
strongly  and  drew  me  by  the  hair  with  both  his 
hands,  and  would  have  beaten  me  with  a  great  stone, 
but  while  he  groped  therefor,  I  proved  the  hardier 
man,  and  threw  him  down  at  my  feet  and  killed  him. 
I  took  likewise  the  second  that  clasped  about  my 
legs  and  bit  me,  and  slew  him  also,  thrusting  him 
through  the  shoulder.  And  the  third  that  came 
running  carelessly  upon  me,  after  that  I  had  struck 
him  full  in  the  stomach,  fell  down  dead.  Thus  when 
I  had  restored  peace  and  delivered  myself,  the 
house,  mine  host,  and  all  his  family  from  this 
present  danger,  I  thought  that  I  should  not  only 
escape  unpunished,  but  also  have  some  great  reward 
of  the  city  for  my  pains.  Moreover  I  that  have 
always  been  clear  and  unspotted  of  crime  and  well 
looked  upon  in  mine  own  country,  and  that  have 



probe  spectatus  apud  meos,  semper  innocentiam 
commodis  cunctis  antetuleram.  Nee  possum 
repperire  cur  iustae  ultionis,  qua  contra  latronse 
deterrimos  commotus  sum,  nunc  istum  reatum  sus- 
tineam,  cum  nemo  possit  monstrare  vel  proprias  inter 
nos  inimicitias  praecessisse  ac  ne  omnino  mihi  notos 
illos  latrones  usquam  fuisse ;  vel  certe  ulla  praeda 
monstretur,  cuius  cupidine  tantum  flagitium  credatur 

7  Haec  profatus  rursum  lacrimis  obortis,  porrectisque 
in  preces  manibus,  per  publicam  misericordiam,  per 
pignorum   caritatem   maestus    tune    hos,   tune    illos 
deprecabar.       Cumque   iam    humanitate    cornmotos, 
misericord  ia  fletuum  afFectos  omnes  satis  crederem, 
solis  et   lustitiae   testatus  oculum    casumque    prae- 
sentem  meum  commendans  deum  providentiae,  paulo 
altius  aspectu  relato  conspicio  prorsus  totum  populum 
(risu  cachinnabili  diffluebant)  nee  secus  ilium  bonum 
hospitem  parentemque  meum  Milonem  risu  maximo 
dissolutum.      At  tune  sic  tacitus  mecum  "  En  fides  " 
inquam  "  En  conscientia :    ego  quidem  pro  hospitis 
salute  et  homicida  sum  et  reus  capitis  inducor,  at  ille 
non  contentus   quod   mihi   nee   assistendi   solacium 
perhibuit,  insuper  exitium  meum  cachinnat." 

8  Inter  haec  quaedam  mulier  per  medium  theatrum 
lacrimosa  et  flebilis,  atra  veste  contecta,  parvulum 
quendam  sinu  tolerans  decurrit,  ac  pone  earn  anus 
alia  pannis  horridis  obsita  paribusque  maesta  fletibus, 
ramos  oleagineos  utraeque  quatientes,  quae  circum- 


esteemed  mine  innocency  above  all  the  treasure  of 
the  world,  can  find  no  reasonable  cause  why,  having 
justly  punished  these  evil  robbers,  I  should  now  be 
accused  and  condemned  to  die ;  since  there  is  none 
that  can  affirm  that  there  has  been  at  any  time  either 
grudge  or  hatred  between  us,  or  that  we  were  aught 
but  men  mere  strangers  and  of  no  acquaintance  :  and 
last  of  all,  no  man  can  prove  that  I  committed  that 
deed  for  any  lucre  or  gain." 

When  I  had  ended  my  words  in  this  sort,  behold  I 
wept  again  piteously,  and  holding  up  my  hands,  I 
prayed  all  the  people  by  their  common  mercy  and  for 
the  love  of  their  poor  infants  and  children  to  shew 
me  some  pity  and  favour.  And  when  I  believed 
their  hearts  somewhat  relented  and  moved  by  my 
lamentable  tears,  I  called  upon  the  eyes  of  the  sun 
and  of  Justice  to  witness  that  I  was  not  guilty  of  the 
crime,  and  so  to  the  divine  providence  I  committed 
my  present  estate ;  but  lifting  up  somewhat  mine 
eyes  again,  I  perceived  that  all  the  people  laughed 
with  exceeding  laughter,  and  especially  my  good 
friend  and  host  Milo.  Then  thought  I  with  my- 
self: "Alas!  where  is  faith,  where  is  conscience? 
Behold  for  the  safeguard  of  mine  host  and  his  family 
I  am  a  slayer  of  men,  and  brought  to  the  bar  as  a 
murderer.  Yet  is  he  not  contented  with  coming 
not  to  comfort  and  help  me,  but  likewise  laugheth 
with  all  his  heart  at  my  destruction." 

When  this  was  a-doing,  out  came  a  woman 
weeping  into  the  middle  of  the  theatre  arrayed  in 
mourning  vesture,  and  bearing  a  child  in  her  arms. 
And  after  her  came  an  old  woman  in  ragged  robes 
crying  and  howling  likewise  :  and  these  brought  with 
them  olive-boughs,  and  going  about  the  bier  whereon 
lay  the  three  slain  bodies  all  covered  up,  with  loud 



fusae  lectulum,  quo  peremptorum  cadavera  contecta 
fuerant,  plangore  sublato  se  lugubriter  eiulantes, 
"  Per  publicam  misericord  iam,  per  commune  ius 
humanitatis "  aiunt  "  Miseremini  indigne  caesorum 
iuvenum  nostraeque  viduitati  ac  solitudini  de  vindicta 
solacium  date.  Certe  parvuli  huius  in  primis  annis 
destituti  fortunis  succurrite  et  de  latronis  huius  san- 
guine legibus  vestris  et  disciplinae  publicae  litate." 

Post  haec  magistratus  qui  natu  maior  assurgit  et 
ad  populum  talia :  "  De  scelere  quidem,  quod  serio 
vindicandum  est,  nee  ipse  qui  commisit  potest  diffiteri, 
sed  una  tantum  subseciva  sollicitudo  nobis  relicta  est, 
ut  ceteros  socios  tanti  facinoris  requiramus  :  necenim 
verisimile  est  hominem  solitarium  tres  tam  validos 
enecasse  iuvenes.  Prohinc  tormentis  veritas  eruenda, 
nam  et  qui  comitabatur  eum  puer  clanculo  profugit, 
et  res  ad  hoc  deducta  est,  ut  per  quaestionem  sceleris 
sui  participes  indicet,  ut  tam  dirae  factionis  funditus 
9  formido  perematur."  Nee  mora,  cum  ritu  Graeciensi 
ignis  et  rota,  turn  ormie  flagrorum  genus  inferuntur. 
Augetur  oppido,  immo  duplicatur  mihi  maestitia 
quod  integro  saltern  mori  non  licuerit.  Sed  anus 
ilia,  quae  fletibus  cuncta  turbaverat,  "  Prius  "  inquit 
"  Optimi  cives,  quam  latronem  istum  miserorum 
pignorum  meorum  peremptorem  cruci  affigatis,  per- 
mittite  corpora  necatorum  revelari,  ut  et  formae 
simul  et  aetatis  contemplatione  magis  magisque  ad 

lamentation  cried  out  miserably  in  this  manner :  "  O 
right  judges,  we  pray  you  by  the  public  pity  and  the 
humanity  which  is  due  to  all,  to  have  mercy  upon 
these  persons  so  foully  slain,  and  succour  our  widow- 
hood and  loss  of  our  dear  husband  and  solace  us  with 
vengeance  ;  and  especially  help  this  poor  infant,  who 
is  now  an  orphan  and  deprived  of  all  good  fortune, 
and  execute  your  justice  by  order  and  law  upon  the 
blood  of  this  thief  who  is  the  occasion  of  all  our 

When  they  had  spoken  these  words,  the  most 
ancient  of  the  judges  did  rise  and  say  to  the  people: 
"  Touching  this  murder  which  deserveth  great  punish- 
ment, this  malefactor  himself  cannot  deny  it :  but  one 
duty  further  is  left  us,  to  enquire  and  try  out 
whether  he  had  no  coadjutors  to  help  him  in  this 
great  crime.  For  it  is  not  likely  that  one  man  alone 
could  kill  three  such  great  and  valiant  persons : 
wherefore  the  truth  must  be  tried  out  by  the  rack, 
for  the  slave  that  was  with  him  fled  secretly  away, 
and  so  we  must  needs  put  him  to  the  question,  that 
we  may  learn  what  other  companions  he  had,  and 
root  out  the  nest  of  these  mischievous  murderers." 
And  there  was  no  long  delay,  for,  according  to  the 
custom  of  Greece,  the  fire,  the  wheel,  and  many  other 
torments  were  brought  in :  then  straightway  my 
sorrow  increased  or  rather  doubled,  in  that  I  could 
not  at  least  end  my  life  with  whole  and  unperished 
members.  But  by  and  by  the  old  woman,  who  had 
troubled  all  the  court  with  her  howling,  implored  the 
judges,  saying  :  "  Before  ye  send  to  the  gallows  this 
thief  that  hath  destroyed  my  wretched  children,  let 
him  uncover  the  bodies  which  he  hath  slain,  that 
every  man  may  see  their  comely  shape  and  youthful 
beauty  and  be  the  more  enraged  thereat,  and  that  he 



lustam  indignationem  arrecti  pro  modo  facinoris 

His  dictis  applauditur,  et  illico  me  magistratus 
ipsum  iubet  corpora,  quae  lectulo  fuerant  posita,  mea 
manu  detegere.  Luctantem  me  ac  diu  renuentem 
praecedens  facinus  instaurare  nova  ostensione  lictores 
iuasu  magistratuum  quam  instantissime  compellunt, 
manum  d^nique  ipsam  e  regione  lateris  tundentes  in 
exitium  suum  super  ipsa  cadavera  porrigunt.  Evictus 
tandem  necessitate  succumbo,  et  ingratis  licet  arrepto 
pallio  retexi  corpora.  Di  boni,  quae  facies  rei ! 
Quodmonstrum  !  Quae  fortunarum  mearum  repentina 
mutatio  !  Quamquam  enim  iam  in  peculio  Proser- 
pinae  et  Orci  familia  numeratus,  subito  in  contrariam 
faciem  obstupefactus  haesi  nee  possum  novae  illius 
imaginis  ration  em  idoneis  verbis  expedire  :  nam 
cadavera  ilia  iugulatorum  hominum  erant  tres  utres 
inflati  variisque  secti  foraminibus  et,  ut  vespertinum 
proelium  meum  recordabar,  his  locis  hiantes,  quibus 
latrones  Ulos  vulneraveram. 

Tune  ille  quorundam  astu  paulisper  cohibitus  risus 
libere  iam  exarsit  in  plebem  :  hi  gaudii  nimietate 
gratulari,  illi  dolorem  ventris  manuum  compressione 
sedare,  et  certe  laetitia  delibuti  meque  respectantes 
cuncti  theatro  facessunt.  At  ego,  ut  primum  illam 
laciniam  prenderam,fixus  in  lajndem  steti  gelidus,nihil 
secus  quam  una  de  ceteris  theatri  statuis  vel  colum- 
nis:  nee  prius  ab  inferis  emersi  quam  Milo  hospes 
aceessit  et  indecta  manu  me  renitentem  lacrimisque 


may  receive  condign  and  worthy  punishment,  accord- 
ing to  the  quality  of  the  offence." 

Therewithal  they  were  delighted  at  her  words,  and 
the  judge  commanded  me  forthwith  to  discover  the 
bodies  of  the  slain  that  lay  upon  the  bier,  with  my 
own  hand  ;  but  when  I  refused  a  good  space,  by 
reason  I  would  not  anew  make  my  deed  apparent  to 
the  eyes  of  all  men,  the  sergeants  charged  me  by 
commandment  of  the  judges,  and  thrust  me  forward 
to  do  the  same,  and  forced  my  hand,  to  its  own  un- 
doing, from  my  side  over  the  bier.  I  then  (being 
enforced  by  necessity)  though  it  were  against  my 
will,  drew  away  the  pall  and  uncovered  their  bodies : 
but,  O  good  Lord,  what  a  strange  sight  did  I  see ! 
What  a  monster!  What  sudden  change  of  all  my 
sorrows !  For  I,  who  had  seemed  as  though  I  were 
already  one  of  the  house  of  Proserpina  and  of  the 
family  of  death,  could  not  sufficiently  express  the 
form  of  this  new  sight,  so  far  was  I  amazed  and 
astonished  thereat ;  for  why  ?  The  bodies  of  the 
three  slain  men  were  no  bodies,  but  three  blown 
bladders,  mangled  in  divers  places,  and  they  seemed 
to  be  wounded  in  those  parts  where  I  remembered  I 
had  wounded  the  thieves  the  night  before. 

Then  did  that  laughter,  which  they  had  before 
artfully  concealed,  break  out  exceedingly  among  the 
people.  Some  rejoiced  marvellously  with  the  remem- 
brance thereof,  some  held  their  stomachs  that  ached 
with  joy,  but  every  man  delighted  at  this  passing 
sport,  gazing  on  me,  and  so  departed  out  of  the 
theatre.  But  I,  from  the  time  that  I  uncovered  the 
bodies,  stood  still  as  one  turned  to  stone  and  cold  as 
ice,  no  otherwise  than  as  the  other  statues  and 
pillars  there,  neither  came  I  up  from  this  hell  of 
mine,  until  such  time  as  Milo,  mine  host,  came  and 



rursum  promicantibus  crebra  singultientem  dementi 
violentia  secum  attraxit  et  observatis  viae  solitudi- 
nibus  per  quosdam  anfractus  clomum  suam  perduxit, 
maestumque  me  atque  etiam  tune  trepidum  variis 
solatur  affatibus  ;  nee  tamen  indignationem  iniuriae, 
quae  inhaeserat  altius  meo  pectori,  ullo  modo  permul- 
cere  quivit. 

11  Ecce  illico  etiam  ipsi  magistrates  cum  suis  insigni- 
bus  domum  nostram  ingressi  talibus  me  monitis 
delenire  gestiunt :  "  Neque  tuae  dignitatis  vel  etiam 
prosapiae  tuorum  ignari  sumus,  Luci  domine ;  nam 
et  provinciam  totam  inclitae  vestrae  familiae  nobilitas 
complectitur.  Ac  ne  istud  quod  vehementer  inge- 
mescis  contumeliae  causa  perpessus  es :  omnem 
itaque  de  tuo  pectore  praesentem  tristitudinem 
mitte,  et  angorem  am'mi  depeile,  nam  lusus  iste 
quern  publice  gratissimo  deo  Risui  per  annua 
r'everticula  sollemniter  celebramus,  semper  com- 
menti  novitate  florescit  :  iste  deus  et  auctorem 
suum  propitius  ubique  comitabitur  amanter  nee 
unquam  patietur  ut  ex  animo  doleas,  sed  frontem 
tuam  serena  venustate  laetabit  assidue.  At  tibi 
civitas  ornnis  pro  ista  gratia  honores  egregiosobtulit ; 
nam  et  patronum  scripsit  et  ut  in  acre  stet  imago 
tua  decrevit."  Ad  haec  dicta  sermonis  vicem  refero  : 
"Tibi  quidem  "  inquam  "  Splendidissima  et  unica 
Thessaliae  civitas,  honorum  talium  parem  gratiam 
memini.  Verum  statuas  et  imagines  dignioribus  mei- 

12que    maioribus     reservare    suadeo."      Sic    pudenter 


took  me  by  the  hand  and  with  civil  violence  led  me 
away  weeping  and  sobbing,  whether  I  would  or  no ; 
and  so  that  I  might  not  be  seen,  he  brought  me 
through  many  blind  ways  and  lanes  to  his  house, 
where  he  went  about  to  comfort  me,  that  was  sad 
and  yet  fearful,  with  gentle  entreaty  of  talk  ;  but  he 
could  in  no  wise  mitigate  my  impatience  of  the 
injury  which  I  conceived  within  my  mind. 

And  behold,  by  and  by  the  very  magistrates  and 
judges,  with  their  ensigns,  entered  into  the  house 
and  endeavoured  to  pacify  me  in  this  sort,  saying : 
"  O  Lucius,  we  are  advertised  of  your  dignity,  and 
know  the  dignity  of  your  ancient  lineage,  for  the 
nobility  of  your  kin  do  possess  the  greatest  part  of 
all  this  province.  And  think  not  that  you  have 
suffered  the  thing  wherefore  you  weep  to  any 
reproach  of  yours  or  ignominy ;  put  away  then 
all  sorrow  out  of  your  heart  and  banish  this  anguish 
of  mind:  for  this  day,  which  we  celebrate  once  a 
year  in  honour  of  the  god  Laughter,  is  always 
renowned  with  some  solemn  novel  prank,  and  the 
god  doth  everywhere  graciously  accompany  with  the 
inventor  and  doer  thereof,  and  he  will  not  suffer  that 
you  should  be  sorrowful,  but  he  will  diligently  make 
glad  your  countenance  with  serene  beauty.  And 
verily  all  the  city,  for  the  grace  that  is  in  you,  hath 
rewarded  you  with  great  honours,  and  hath  written 
you  down  their  patron:  and,  further,  that  your 
statue  or  image  shall  be  set  up  in  copper  for  a  per- 
petual remembrance."  To  whom  I  answered:  "As 
for  such  benefits  as  I  have  received  already  of  this 
famous  city  of  Thessaly,  I  yield  and  render  most 
entire  thanks,  but  as  touching  the  setting  up  of  any 
statues  or  images,  I  would  wish  that  they  should 
be  reserved  for  such  as  are  more  worthy  and  greater 



allocutus  et  paulisper  hilaro  vultu  renidens,  quan- 
tumque  poteram  laetiorem  me  refingens,  comiter 
abeuntes  magistrates  appello. 

Et   ecce   quidam   intro   currens  famulus    "  Rogat 
te  "  ait  "  Tua  parens  Byrrhaena  et  convivii,  cui  te 
sero   desponderas,   iam   appropinquantis   admonet." 
Ad    haec   ego   formidans    et    procul    perhorrescens 
etiam  ipsam  domum  eius,  "  Quam  vellem"  inquam 
"  Parens,  iussis   tuis   obsequium   commodare,  si  per 
fidem  liceret  id  facere:  hospes  enim  meus  Milo  per 
hodierni  diei  praesentissimum  numen  adiurans  effecit, 
ut  eius  hodiernae  cenae  pignerarer,  nee  ipse  discedit 
nee   me   digredi    patitur.       Prohinc    epulare    vadi- 
monium    difFeramus."      Haec    adhuc    me    loquente 
manu  firmiter  iniecta  Milo  iussis  balnearibus  assequi 
producit  ad  lavacrum  proximum  :  at  ego  vitans  oculos 
omnium  et  quern  ipse  fabricaveram  risum  obviorum 
declinans  lateri  eius  adambulabam  obtectus,  nee  qui 
laverim,  qui  terserim,  qui  domum  rursum  reverterim 
prae  rubore  memini,  sic  omnium  oculis  nutibus  ac 
deriique  manibus  denotatus  impos  animi  stupebam. 
13      Raptim    denique  paupertina  Milonis  cenula  per- 
functuSj  causatusque   capitis  acrem  dolorem,    quern 
mini  lacrimarum  assiduitas  incusserat,  concedo  cubi- 
tum  venia  facile  tributa,  et  abiectus  in  lectulo  meo 
quae    gesta    fuerant    singula    maestus    recordabar, 
quoad  tandem  Fotis  mea,  dominae  suae  cubitu  pro- 


than  I."  When  I  had  spoken  these  words  somewhat 
modestly  with  a  more  cheerful  countenance,  and 
shewed  myself  more  merry  than  I  was  before,  the 
judges  and  magistrates  departed,  and  I  reverently 
took  my  leave  of  them  and  bade  them  farewell. 

And  behold,  by  and  by  there  came  one  running  to 
me  in  haste,  and  said  :  "  Sir,  your  cousin  Byrrhaena 
desireth  you  to  take  the  pains,  according  to  your 
promise  yesternight,  to  come  to  supper;  for  it  is 
ready."  But  I,  greatly  fearing,  and  shrinking  even 
afar  at  the  very  thought  of  her  house,  said  unto  the 
messenger :  "  My  friend,  I  pray  you  to  tell  my 
cousin,  your  mistress,  that  I  would  willingly  be  at 
her  commandment,  but  for  breaking  my  troth  and 
credit.  For  mine  host  Milo  enforced  me  to  assure 
him,  and  compelled  me  by  the  feast  of  this  present 
day,  that  I  should  pledge  me  to  his  dinner  and  com- 
pany, and  he  goeth  not  forth  nor  suffereth  me  to 
depart  from  him  ;  wherefore  I  pray  you  to  excuse  me 
and  to  defer  my  promise  until  another  time."  And 
while  I  was  speaking  these  words,  Milo  took  me  by 
the  hand  and  led  me  towards  the  next  bath  ;  but  by 
the  way  I  went  crouching  under  him  to  hide  myselt 
from  the  sight  of  men,  because  I  had  ministered  such 
an  occasion  of  laughter.  And  when  I  had  washed 
and  wiped  myself  and  returned  home  again,  I  never 
remembered  any  such  thing,  so  greatly  was  I  ashamed 
at  the  nodding  and  pointing  of  every  person. 

Then  I  went  to  supper  with  Milo,  where  God  wot 
we  fared  but  poorly  :  wherefore  (feigning  that  my 
head  did  ache  by  reason  of  my  sobbing  and  weeping 
all  the  day)  I  desired  license  to  depart  to  my  chamber, 
and  so  I  went  to  bed,  and  there  I  began  to  call  to 
mind  all  the  sorrows  and  griefs  that  I  was  in  the 
day  before,  until  such  time  as  my  love  Fotis  (having 



eurato,  sui  longe  dissimilis  advenit :  non  enim  laeta 
facie  nee  sermone  dicaculo,  sed  vultuosam  frontem 
rugis     insurgentibus    asseverabat.       Cunctanter    ac 
timide    denique    sermone    prolate,    "Ego"    inquit 
"Ipsa    confiteor    ultro,    ego    tibi    huius   molestiae 
fui,"  et  cum  dicto  loruni  quempiam  sinu  suo  depromit 
mihique  porrigens,  "Cape,"  inquit  "  Oro  te,  et  de 
perfida  muliere  vindictam,  immo   vero   licet   maius 
quodvis  supplicium  sume.     Nee  tamen  me  putes,  oro, 
sponte    angorem    istum    tibi    concinnasse  :    di    mihi 
melius,  quam  ut  mei  causa  vel  tantillum  scrupulum 
patiare,    ac  si  quid  adversi  tuum  caput  respicit,  id 
omne    protinus    meo    luatur   sanguine.        Sed    quod 
alterius    rei    causa   facere    iussa  sum,   mala  quadara 
14mea   sorte    in   tuam   recidit   iniuriam."     Tune    ego 
familiaris     curiositatis    admonitus    factique    causam 
delitescentem  nudari  gestiens   suscipio :  "  Omnium 
quidem    nequissimus     audacissimusque    lorus    iste, 
quern   tibi  verberandae  destinasti,  prius  a  me  con- 
cisus  atque  laceratus  interibit  ipse  quam  tuam  plu- 
meam  lacteamque  contingat  cutem.     Sed  mihi  cum 
fide  memora,  quod  tuum  factum  fati l  scaevitas  con- 
secuta   in   meum   convertit   exitium.     Adiuro  enim 
tuum  mihi  carissimum  caput,  nulli  me  prorsus  ac  ne 
tibi  quidem  ipsi  asseveranti  posse  credere,  quod  tu 
quicquam    in    meam    cogitaveris    perniciem :    porro 
meditatus  innoxios  casus  incertus  vel  etiam  adversus 
culpaenon  potest  addicere."     Cum  isto  fine  sermonis 
1  A  genitive  depending  on  scaevitas  seems  clearly  to  have 
dropped  out  of  the  text.    Helm  and  van  der  Vliet  both  print 
fortunac,  but  I  have  preferred  Eohde's  fati,  as  more  likely  to 



brought  her  mistress  to  sleep)  came  into  the  chamber 
not  as  she  was  wont  to  do,  for  she  seemed  nothing 
pleasant  neither  in  countenance  nor  talk,  but  with  a 
sour  face  and  frowning  look,  and  began  to  speak 
slowly  and  fearfully  in  this  sort :  "  Verily  I  confess 
that  I  have  been  the  occasion  of  all  thy  trouble  this 
day,"  and  therewithal  she  pulled  out  a  whip  from 
under  her  apron,  and  delivered  it  to  me,  saying : 
"  Revenge  thyself  of  me,  mischievous  harlot  that  I 
am,  or  rather  slay  me.  Yet  think  not  that  I  did 
willingly  procure  this  anguish  and  sorrow  unto  you  ; 
I  call  the  gods  to  witness.  For  I  had  rather  suffer 
mine  own  body  to  be  punished  than  that  you  should 
receive  or  sustain  any  harm  by  my  means,  but  that 
which  I  was  bidden  to  do  was  wrought  for  some 
other  purpose,  but  behold  the  unlucky  chance  for- 
tuned on  you  by  mine  evil  occasion."  Then  I,  very 
envious  and  desirous  to  know  the  secret  cause  of  the 
matter,  answered  :  "In  faith,"  quoth  I,  "This  most 
pestilent  and  evil-favoured  whip  (which  thou  hast 
brought  to  scourge  thyself  withal)  shall  first  be 
broken  in  a  thousand  pieces,  than  it  should  touch  or 
hurt  thy  delicate  and  dainty  skin ;  but  I  pray  you 
tell  me  truly  what  deed  of  yours  has  been  turned  by 
the  perversity  of  fortune  to  my  trouble  and  sorrow. 
For  I  dare  swear  by  the  love  that  I  bear  unto  you 
that  I  will  not  be  persuaded  (though  you  yourself 
endeavour  the  same)  that  ever  you  went  about  to 
trouble  or  harm  me  :  and  moreover  no  chance,  though 
it  be  uncertain  or  even  unlucky,  can  make  a  crime 
of  harmless  and  innocent  intentions."  When  I  had 
spoken  these  words,  I  perceived  that  Fotis's  eyes 

disappear  by  haplography,  owing  to  its  resemblance  to  the 
preceding  word. 



oculos  Fotidis  meae  udos  ac  tremulos  et  prona 
libidine  raarcidos  iam  iamque  semiadopertulos 
adnixis  et  sorbillantibus  saviis  sitienter  haurie- 

15  Sic  ilia  laetitia  recreata   "  Patere  "   inquit"Oro, 
prius  fores  cubiculi  diligenter  occludam,  ne  sermonis 
elapsi  profana  petulantia  committam  grande  flagi- 
tium";   et   curn    dicto    pessulis    iniectis   et  uncino 
firmiter  immisso,  sic    ad  me  reversa   colloque  meo 
manibus  ambabus  implexa  voce  tenui  et  admodum 
diminuta,  "  Paveo  "  inquit  "  Et  formido  solide  domus 
huius  operta  detegere  et  arcana  dominae  meae  reve- 
lare  secreta :  sed  melius  de  te  doctrinaque  tua  prae- 
sumo,  qui  praeter  generosam  natalium  dignitatem, 
praeter  sublime  ingenium,   sacris  pluribus  initiatus 
profecto  nosti  sanctam  silentii  fidem.     Quaecumque 
itaque  commisero  huius  religiosi  pectoris  tui  pene- 
traiibus,  semper  haec  intra  consaeptum  clausa  cus- 
todias  oro,  et  simplicitatem  relationis  meae  tenaci- 
tate  taciturnitatis  tuae  remunerare.     Nam  me,  quae 
sola  mortalium  novi,  amor   is,  quo  tibi  teneor,  in- 
dicare  compellit ;  iam  scies  omnem  domus  nostrae 
statum,  iam  scies  herae  meae  miranda  secreta,  quibus 
obaudiunt  manes,  turbantur  sidera,  coguntur  numina, 
serviunt  elementa. 

"  Nee  unquam  magis  artis  huius  violentia  nitittir, 
quam  cum  scitulae  formulae  iuvenem  quempiam 
libenter  aspexit,  quod  quidem  ei  solet  crebriter  eve- 

16  nire.     Nunc  etiam  adolescentem  quendam  Boeotium 


were  wet  and  trembling  and  dull  with  desire,  and 
now  half  closed,  so  that  I  embraced  and  kissed  her 
sweetly,  and  greedily  drank  therefrom. 

Now  when  she  was  somewhat  restored  unto  joy 
she  desired  me  that  she  might  shut  the  chamber 
door,  lest  by  the  intemperance  of  her  tongue  in 
uttering  any  unfitting  words  there  might  grow  further 
inconvenience.  Wherewithal  she  barred  and  propped 
the  door  and  came  to  me  again,  and  embracing  me 
lovingly  about  the  neck  with  both  her  arms,  spoke 
with  a  whispering  soft  voice  and  said  :  "  I  do  greatly 
fear  to  discover  the  privities  of  this  house,  and  to 
utter  the  secret  mysteries  of  my  dame,  but  I  have 
such  a  confidence  in  you  and  in  your  wisdom,  by 
reason  that  you  are  come  of  so  noble  a  line  and 
endued  with  so  profound  sapience,  and  further  in- 
structed in  so  many  holy  and  divine  things  that  you 
will  faithfully  keep  silence,  and  that  whatsoever  I 
shall  reveal  or  declare  unto  you,  you  would  close 
them  within  the  bottom  of  your  heart,  and  never 
discover  the  same,  but  rather  repay  the  simple  tale 
that  I  shall  tell  you  by  keeping  it  utterly  hidden 
and  dark  ;  for  I  ensure  you  the  love  that  I  bear  you 
enforceth  me,  that  alone  of  mortals  know  aught 
thereof,  to  utter  it.  Now  shall  you  know  all  the 
estate  of  our  house,  now  shall  you  know  the  hidden 
secrets  of  my  mistress,  unto  which  the  powers  of  hell 
do  obey,  and  by  which  the  celestial  planets  are 
troubled,  the  gods  made  weak,  and  the  elements 

"  Neither  is  the  violence  of  her  art  in  more 
strength  and  force  than  when  she  espieth  some 
comely  young  man  that  pleaseth  her  fancy,  as  often- 
times happeneth.  For  now  she  loveth  to  distraction 
one  young  Boeotian,  a  fair  and  beautiful  person,  on 



summe  decorum  efflictim  deperit  totasque  artis  manus, 
machinas  omnes  ardenter  exercet :  audivi  vesperi, 
meis  his,  inquam,  auribus  audivi,  quod  non  celerius 
sol  caelo  ruisset  noctique  ad  exercendas  illecebras 
raagiae  maturius  cessisset,  ipsi  soli  nubilam  caliginem 
et  perpetuas  tenebras  comminantem.  Hunc  iuve- 
nem,  cum  e  balneis  rediret  ipsa,  tonstrinae  residen- 
tem  hesterna  die  forte  conspexit,  ac  me  capillos  eius, 
qui  iam  caede  cultrorum  desecti  humi  iacebant, 
clanculo  praecepit  J  auferre  :  quos  me  sedulo  furtim- 
que  colligentem  tonsor  invenit,  et  quod  alioquin 
publicitus  maleficae  disciplinae  perinfames  sumus, 
arreptam  inclementer  increpat :  e  Tune,  ultima,  non 
cessas  subinde  lectorum  iuvenum  capillamenta  surri- 
pere  ?  Quod  scelus  nisi  tandem  desines,  magistra- 
tibus  te  constanter  obiciam.'  Et  verbum  facto  secuttu 
immissa  manu  scrutatus  e  mediis  papillis  meis  iam 
capillos  absconditos  iratus  abripuit :  quo  gesto  gravi- 
ter  affecta  mecumque  reputans  dominae  meae  mores, 
quod  huiusmodi  repulsa  satis  acriter  commoveri  me- 
que  verberare  saevissime  consuevit,  iam  de  fuga  con- 
silium  tenebam,  sed  istud  quidem  tui  contemplatione 
1?  abieci  statim.  Verum  cum  tristis  inde  discederem, 
conspicio  quendam  forficulis  attondentem  caprinos 
utres ;  quos  cum  probe  constrictos  inflatosque  et  iam 
pendentes  cernerem,  ne  prorsus  vacuis  inanibus  re- 
direm,2  capillos  eorum  humi  iacentes,  flavos  ac  per  hoc 

1  Theemendationof  Scioppiusforthe  MSS'  praecipitavitferre. 

2  These  five  words  occur  in  the  MSS  after  discederem  at  the 
beginning  of  the  chapter.     Their  transposition  here  (suggested 
by  van  der  Vliet)  seems  necessary. 



whom  she  employeth  all  her  sorcery  and  enchant- 
ment ;  and  I  heard  her  threaten  with  mine  own  ears 
yesternight,  that  because  the  sun  had  not  then 
presently  gone  down  and  the  night  come  to  minister 
convenient  time  to  work  her  magical  enticement,  she 
would  veil  the  same  sun  with  a  thick  shadow  of  cloud 
and  bring  perpetual  darkness  over  all  the  world. 
And  you  shall  know  that  when  she  saw  yesternight 
this  Boeotian  sitting  at  the  barber's,  when  she  came 
from  the  baths,  she  secretly  commanded  me  to 
gather  some  of  the  hair  of  his  head  which  lay  dis- 
persed upon  the  ground,  and  to  bring  it  home  ; 
which  when  I  thought  to  have  done,  gathering  it  up 
secretly  with  care,  the  barber  espied  me,  and  by 
reason  it  was  bruited  throughout  all  the  city  that 
we  were  witches  and  enchantresses,  he  seized  upon 
me  and  cried  out,  and  chid  me,  saying :  '  Will  you 
never  leave  off  stealing  of  handsome  young  men's 
hairs  ?  In  faith  I  assure  you,  unless  you  cease  your 
wicked  sorceries,  I  will  complain  to  the  justices.' 
Wherewithal  he  came  angrily  towards  me  and  took 
away  the  hair  which  I  had  gathered  out  of  mine 
apron,  which  grieved  me  very  much.  For  1  knew 
my  mistress's  manners,  that  she  would  not  be  con- 
tented, but  beat  me  cruelly.  Wherefore  I  intended 
to  run  away,  but  the  remembrance  of  you  put 
always  that  thought  out  of  my  mind,  and  so  I 
came  homeward  very  sorrowful ;  but  because  I 
would  not  seem  to  come  in  my  mistress's  sight 
with  empty  hands,  I  saw  a  man  shearing  of 
blown  goat-skins.  Now  these  were  well  tied  up 
and  blown  out,  and  were  hanging  up,  and  the  hair 
he  had  shorn  off  was  yellow,  and  much  resembled 



illi  Boeotio  iuveni  consimiles,  plusculos  aufero  eosque 
dominae  meae  dissimulata  veritate  trado. 

"  Sic  noctis  initio,  priusquam  cena  te  reciperes, 
Pamphile  mea  iam  vecors  animi  tectam  scandulare 
conscendit,  quod  altrinsecus  aedium  patore  perflabili 
nudatum  ad  omnes,  orientales  ceterosque,  aspectus 
pervium,,  maxime  his  artibus  suis  commodatum, 
secreto  colit,  priusque  apparatu  solito  instruit 
feralem  officinam,  omne  genus  aromatis,  et  ignora- 
biliter  laminis  litteratis  et  infelicium  avium  duran- 
tibus  damnis,defletorum  sepultorum  etiam  cadaverum 
expositis  multis  admodum  membris  :  hie  nares  et 
digiti,  illic  carnosi  clavi  pendentium,  alibi  trucidat- 
orum  servatus  cruor  et  extorta  dentibus  ferarum 
18  trunca  calvaria.  Tune,  decantatis  spirantibus 
fibris,  litat  vario  latice,  nunc  rore  fontano,  nunc  lacte 
vaccino,  nunc  melle  montano,  libat  et  mulsa.  Sic 
illos  capillos  in  mutuos  nexus  obditos  atque  nodatos 
cum  multis  odoribus  dat  vivis  carbonibus  adolendos  : 
tune  protinus  inexpugnabili  magicae  disciplinae 
potestate  et  caeca  numinum  coactorum  violeiitia  ilia 
corpora,  quorum  fumabant  stridentes  capilli,  spiritum 
mutuantur  humanum  et  sentiunt  et  audiunt  et  am- 
bulant,  et  qua  nidor  suarum  ducebat  exuviarum 
veniunt  et  pro  illo  iuvene  Boeotio  aditum  gestientes 
fores  insiliunt ;  cum  ecce  crapula  madens  et  impro- 
vidae  noctis  deceptus  caligine,  audacter  mucrone 
destricto  in  insani  modum  Aiacis  armatus,  non  ut  ille 
vivis  pecoribus  infestus  tota  laniavit  armenta,  sed 
longefortius^quitres  inflates  caprinos  utres  exanimasti, 


the  hair  of  the  Boeotian  :  and  I  took  a  good  deal 
thereof,  and  dissembling  the  truth  I  brought  it  to 
my  mistress. 

"  And  so  when  night  came,  before  your  return  from 
supper,  Pamphile  my  mistress,  being  now  out  of  her 
wits,  went  up  to  a  high  gallery  of  her  house,  blown 
upon  by  all  the  winds  of  heaven,  opening  to  the  east 
and  all  other  parts  of  the  world ;  well  prepared  for 
these  her  practices,  she  gathered  together  all  her 
accustomed  substance  for  fumigations,  she  brought 
forth  plates  of  metal  carved  with  strange  characters, 
she  prepared  the  bones  of  birds  of  ill-omen,  she  made 
ready  the  members  of  dead  men  brought  from  their 
tombs.  Here  she  set  out  their  nostrils  and  fingers, 
there  the  nails  with  lumps  of  flesh  of  such  as  were 
hanged,  the  blood  which  she  had  reserved  of  such  as 
were  slain,  and  skulls  snatched  away  from  the  jaws 
and  teeth  of  wild  beasts.  Then  she  said  certain 
charms  over  entrails  still  warm  and  breathing,  and 
dipped  them  in  divers  waters,  as  in  well  water,  cow 
milk,  mountain  honey  and  mead ;  which  when  she 
had  done  she  tied  and  lapped  up  the  hair  together, 
and  with  many  perfumes  and  smells  threw  it  into  a 
hot  fire  to  burn.  Then  by  the  strong  force  of  this 
sorcery,  and  the  invisible  violence  of  the  gods  so 
compelled,  those  bodies,  whose  hair  was  burning  in 
the  fire,  received  human  breath,  and  felt,  heard,  and 
walked,  and,  smelling  the  scent  of  their  own  hair, 
came  and  rapped  at  our  doors  instead  of  the  Boeotian. 
Then  came  you  being  well  tippled,  and  deceived  by 
the  obscurity  of  the  night,  and  drew  out  your  sword 
courageously,  like  furious  Ajax,  and  killed,  not  as  he 
did  whole  herds  of  living  beasts,  but  three  blown 
skins,  a  deed  more  brave  than  his,  to  the  intent  that 

after  the  slaughter  of  so  many  enemies  without 




ut  ego  te  prostratis  hostibus  sine  macula  sanguinis 
non  homicidam  nunc  sed  utricidam  amplecterer." 
19      Et  sic  lepido  sermone  Fotis,  at  invicem  cavillatus 
ego  "  Igitur  iam  et   ipse  possum "    inquam  "  Mihi 
primam  istam  virtutis  adoream  ad  exemplum  duodeni 
laboris  Herculei  numerare,    vel    trigemino    corpori 
Geryonis  vel  triplici  formae  Cerberi,  totidem  peremp- 
tos  utres  coaequando.     Sed  ut  ex  animo  tibi  volens 
omne  delictum,  quo  me  tantis  angoribus  implicasti, 
remittam,  praesta  quod  summis  votis  expostulo  et 
dominam   tuam,    cum    aliquid  huius    divinae    disci- 
plinae  molitur,  ostende,  cum  deos  invocat,  certe  cum 
reformatur,  ut  videam  :  sum  namque  coram  magiae 
noscendae  ardentissimus  cupitor,  quamquam  mihi  nee 
ipsa  tu  videare  rerum  rudis  vel  expers.     Scio  istud 
et    plane  sentio,    cum    semper    alioquin    spretorem 
matronalium   amplexuum,    sic    tuis  istis   micantibus 
oculis  et  rubentibus  bucculis  et  renidentibus  crinibus 
et  hiantibus  osculis   et  fragrantibus  papillis  in  ser- 
vilem  modum  addictum    atque    mancipatum   teneas 
volentem:     iam    denique    nee    Larem    require    nee 
domuitionem  paro  et   nocte    ista    nihil    antepono." 
20  "  Quam    vellem "    respondit    ilia,    "  Praestare   tibi, 
Luci,  quod  cupis,  sed  propter  invidos  mores  in  solitu- 
dinem  semper  abstrusa  et  omnium  praesentia  viduata 
solet  huiusmodi  secreta  perficere.     Sed  tuum  postu- 
latum    praeponam    periculo    meo    idque    observatis 


effusion  of  blood,  might  embrace  and    kiss  not  an 
homicide,  but  an  utricide." 

Thus  pleasantly  Fotis,  but  I  again  mocked  and 
taunted  her,  saying :  "  Verily  now  may  I  for  this  first 
achieved  enterprise  be  numbered  with  Hercules,  who 
by  his  valiant  prowess  performed  the  twelve  notable 
labours,  as  Geryon  with  three  bodies,  and  as  Cerberus 
with  three  heads  :  for  I  have  slain  three  blown  goat- 
skins. But  to  the  end  I  may  pardon  thee  with  all  my 
heart  of  that  which  thou  hast  committed,  bringing 
upon  me  so  much  grief  and  pain,  perform  the  thing 
which  I  shall  most  earnestly  desire  of  thee,  that  is, 
bring  me  that  I  may  see  and  behold  when  thy 
mistress  goes  about  any  sorcery  or  enchantment, 
and  when  she  prays  unto  her  gods,  but  most  of  all 
when  she  changes  her  form,  for  I  am  very  desirous  of 
knowing  more  closely  that  art  of  magic,  and  as  it 
seems  unto  me,  thou  thyself  hast  some  experience 
in  the  same.  For  this  I  know  and  plainly  feel,  that 
(whereas  I  have  always  irked  and  loathed  the  em- 
bracings  and  love  even  of  noble  matrons)  I  am  so 
stricken  and  subdued  with  thy  shining  eyes,  ruddy 
cheeks,  glittering  hair,  close  kisses,  and  sweet-smell- 
ing breasts,  that  thou  boldest  me  bound  and  tied  to 
thee  like  a  slave  with  my  own  goodwill,  and  I  neither 
have  mind  to  go  home,  nor  to  depart  hence,  but 
esteem  the  pleasure  I  shall  have  with  thee  this  night 
above  all  the  joys  of  the  world."  "  Then,"  quoth  she, 
"O  my  Lucius,  how  willing  would  I  be  to  fulfil  your 
desire,  but  besides  that  she  is  of  a  grudging  and 
surly  disposition,  she  gets  herself  into  solitary  places 
and  out  of  the  presence  of  every  person  when  she 
mindeth  to  make  her  enchantments ;  howbeit  I  re- 
gard more  to  gratify  your  request  than  I  do  esteem 
the  danger  of  my  life :  and  I  will  look  for  oppor- 
i  129 


opportunis  temporibus  sedulo  perficiana,modo,ut  initio 
praefata  sum,  rei  tantae  fidem  silentiumque  tribue." 
Sic  nobis  garrientibus  libido  mutua  et  animos  siraul 
et  membra  suscitat  :  omnibus  abiectis  amiculis  ac 
tandem1  denique  intecti  atque  nudati  bacchamur  in 
Venerem,  cum  quidem  mihi  iam  fatigato  de  propria 
liberalitate  Fotis  puerile  obtulit  corollarium,  iamque 
luminibus  nostris  vigilia  marcidis  iiifusus  sopor  etiam 
in  altum  diem  nosattinuit. 

21  Ad  hunc  modum  transactis  voluptarie  paucis 
noctibus,  quadam  die  percita  Fotis  ac  satis  trepida 
me  accurrit  indicatque  dominam  suam,  quod  nihil 
etiam  tune  in  suos  amores  ceteris  artibus  promoveret, 
nocte  proxima  in  avem  sese  plumaturam  atque  ad 
suum  cupitum  sic  devolaturam ;  proin  memet  ad  rei 
tantae  speculam  caute  praepararem.  Iamque  circa 
primam  noctis  vigiliam  ad  illud  superius  cubiculum 
suspenso  et  insono  vestigio  me  perducit  ipsa,  perque 
rimam  ostiorum  quampiam  iubet  arbitrari  quae  sic 
gesta  sunt.  Iam  primum  omnibus  laciniis  se  devestit 
Pamphile  et  arcula  quadam  reclusa  pyxides  plusculas 
inde  depromit,  de  quis  unius  operculo  remoto  atque 
indidem  egesta  unguedine  diuque  palmulis  suis 
affricta  ab  imis  unguibus  sese  totam  adusque 
summos  capillos  perlinit,  multumque  cum  lucerna 
secreto  collocuta  membra  tremulo  succussu  quatit : 
quis  leniter  fluctuantibus  promicant  mollesplumulae, 
crescunt  et  fortes  pinnulae,  duratur  nasus  incurvus, 
coguntur  ungues  adunci,  fit  bubo  Pamphile.  Sic 
edito  stridore  querulo,  iam  sui  periclitabunda  pau- 

1  The  MSS  have  actenus,  which  was  naturally  read  hactenus 
by  the  old  editors.  Ae  tandem  is  Helm's  emendation,  which 
gives  much  better  sense — hactenus,  indeed,  is  almost  the  opposite 
of  what  is  required. 



tunity  and  time  for  that  which  you  desire,  but  always 
upon  this  condition,  that,  as  I  bade  you  before,  you 
secretly  keep  close  such  things  as  are  done."  Thus 
as  we  reasoned  together  the  courage  of  Venus  assailed 
as  well  our  desires  as  our  members  ;  and  so  she  un- 
rayed  herself  and  came  to  me,  and  we  spent  the 
night  in  pastime  and  dalliance,  and  Fotis  giving 
me  all  that  she  might  and  more,  at  last  drowsy 
and  unlusty  sleep  came  upon  our  eyes  and  we 
were  constrained  to  lie  still  until  it  was  now  high 

Now  when  we  had  thus  delightfully  passed  a  few 
nights  on  this  wise,  on  a  day  Fotis  came  running  to 
me  in  great  trembling  and  said  that  her  mistress,  for 
that  she  could  not  any  the  more  gain  towards  that  she 
loved,  intended,  the  night  following,  to  transform 
herself  into  a  bird,  and  to  fly  to  him  she  desired ; 
wherefore  she  willed  me  privily  to  prepare  myself  to 
see  the  same.  And  about  the  first  watch  of  the 
night  she  led  me,  walking  a-tiptoe  and  very  softly, 
into  that  high  chamber,  and  bade  me  look  through 
the  chink  of  a  door.  Where  first  I  saw  how  Pamphile 
put  off  all  her  garments,  and  took  out  of  a  certain  coffer 
sundry  kind  of  boxes,  of  the  which  she  opened  one  and 
tempered  the  ointment  therein  with  her  fingers,  and 
then  rubbed  her  body  therewith  from  the  sole  of  the 
foot  to  the  crown  of  the  head :  and  when  she  had 
spoken  much  privily  with  the  lamp,  she  shaked  all 
the  parts  of  her  body,  and  as  they  gently  moved 
behold  I  perceived  a  plume  of  feathers  did  burgeon 
out  upon  them,  strong  wings  did  grow,  her  nose 
was  more  crooked  and  hard,  her  nails  turned  into 
claws,  and  so  Pamphile  became  an  owl  :  then  she 
cried  and  screeched  like  a  bird  of  that  kind,  and 

illing  to  prove  her  force,  moved  herself  from  the 



latim  terra  resultat,  mox  in  altum  sublimata  forin- 
secus  totis  alis  evolat. 

22      Et    ilia   quidem   magicis    suis   artibus   volens  re- 
formatur,  at  ego,  nullo  decantatus  carmine,  praesentis 
tantum   facti    stupore   defixus  quidvis    aliud    magis 
videbar  esse  quam   Lucius,   sic  exterminatus  animi, 
attonitus  in  amentiam  vigilans  somniabar  ;    defrictis 
adeo    diu    pupulis   an    vigilarem    scire    quaerebam. 
Tandem  denique  reversus  ad    sensum  praesentium, 
arrepta    manu    Fotidis    et   admota    meis    luminibus, 
"  Patere,  oro  te,"  inquam  "  Dum  dictat  occasio,  magno 
et  singular!    me  afFectionis    tuae    fructu  perfrui   et 
impertire  nobis    unctulum  indidem,   per   istas   tuas 
papillas,  mea   mellitula,  tuumque    mancipium  irre- 
munerabili  beneficio  sic  tibi  perpetuo  pignera,  ac  iam 
perfice   ut  meae    Veneri    Cupido  pinnatus  assistam 
tibi."     "  Ain  ?  "    inquit  "  Vulpinaris  amasio,    meque 
sponte  asceam  cruribus  meis  illidere  compellis  ?    Sic 
inermem    vix   a   lupulis    conserve    Thessalis ;    hunc 
23  alitem  factum  ubi  quaeram,  videbo  quando  ?  "     "  At 
niihi  scelus  istud  depellant  caelites,"    inquam  "Ut 
ego  quamvis  ipsius   aquilae    sublimis   volatibus  toto 
caelo   pervius   et   supremi    lovis  certus   nuntius  vel 
laetus  armiger,  tamen  non  ad  meum  nidulum  post 
illam  pinnarum  dignitatem  subinde  devolem !  Adiuro 
per  dulcem  istum  capilli  tui  nodulum,   quo   meum 
vinxisti  spiritum,  me  nullam  aliam  meae  Fotidi  malle. 
Tune  etiam  istud  meis  cogitationibus  occurrit,  cum 




ground  by  little  and  little,  till  at  last  she  leaped  up 
and  flew  quite  away. 

Thus  by  her  sorcery  she  transformed  her  body 
into  what  shape  she  would,  which  when  I  saw  I  was 
greatly  astonished,  and  although  I  was  enchanted 
by  no  kind  of  charm,  yet  I  thought  I  seemed  not  to 
have  the  likeness  of  Lucius,  for  so  was  1  vanished 
from  my  senses,  amazed  in  madness,  that  I  dreamed 
waking,  and  felt  mine  eyes  to  know  whether  I  were 
asleep  or  no.  But  when  I  was  come  again  to  myself, 
I  took  Fotis  by  the  hand,  and  moved  it  to  mine 
eyes,  and  said :  "  I  pray  thee,  while  occasion  doth 
serve,  that  I  may  have  the  fruition  of  the  fruits  of 
thy  love  towards  me,  and  grant  me  some  of  this  oint- 
ment. O  Fotis,  my  honey,  I  pray  thee  by  thy  sweet 
breasts,  and  I  will  ever  hereafter  be  bound  unto  you 
by  a  mighty  gift  and  obedient  to  your  commandment, 
if  you  will  but  make  that  I  may  be  turned  into  a 
bird,  and  stand,  like  Cupid  with  his  wings,  beside 
you  my  Venus."  Then  said  Fotis  :  "  Will  you  go 
about  to  deceive  me  now,  my  love,  like  a  fox,  and 
enforce  me  to  work  mine  own  sorrow  P1  Do  I  hardly 
now  save  you,  that  are  without  defence,  from  these 
she-wolves  of  Thessaly,  and  then  if  you  be  a  bird 
where  shall  I  seek  you  ?  And  when  shall  I  see  you  ?  " 
Then  answered  I :  "God  forbid  that  I  should  commit 
such  a  crime,  for  though  I  could  fly  into  the  air  as 
an  eagle,  or  though  1  were  the  sure  messenger  or 
joyful  armour-bearer  of  Jupiter,  yet  would  I  have 
recourse  to  nest  with  thee  for  all  that  glory  of  wings  : 
and  I  swear  by  the  knot  of  thy  amiable  hair,  that 
wherewith  you  have  fast  bound  my  spirit,  I  love  not 
any  other  person  rather  than  Fotis.  "  Moreover,  this 
cometh  to  my  mind,  that  if  by  virtue  of  the  ointment 
1  Lit.  "  to  apply  the  axe  to  my  owu  legs." 



semel  avem  talem  perunctus  induero,  domus  omnes 
procul  me  vitare  debere :  quam  pulchro  enim  quam- 
que  festive  matronae  perfruentur  amatore  bubone ! 
Quid,  quod  istas  nocturnas  aves,  cum  penetraverint 
Larem  quempiam,  sollicite  prehensas  foribus  videmus 
affigi  ut,  quod  infaustis  volatibus  familiae  minantur 
exitium,  suis  luant  cruciatibus  ?     Sed,  quod  sciscitari 
paene    praeterivi,    quo  dicto  factove    rursum    exutis 
pinnulis    illis   ad   meum    redibo  Lucium?"     « Bono 
animo    es   quod  ad  huius  rei   curam   pertinet"  ait. 
<  Nam  mihi  domina  singula  monstravit,  quae  possunt 
rursus  in  fades  hominum  tales  figuras  reformare  :  nee 
istud  factum  putes  ulla   benivolentia,  sed  ut  ei  re- 
deunti    medela   salubri   possem   subsistere.      Specta 
denique  quam  parvis  quamque  futilibus  tanta  res  pro- 
curetur  herbulis :  anethi  modicum  cum  lauri  foliis  im- 
missum  rore  fontano  datur  lavacrum  et  poculum." 
24       Haec  identidem  asseverans  summa  cum  trepida- 
tione  irrepit  cubiculum  et  pyxidem  depromit  arcula ; 
quam  ego  amplexus  ac  deosculatus  prius,  utque  mihi 
prosperis  faveret  volatibus  deprecatus,  abiectis  pro- 
pere  laciniis  totis,  avide  manus  immersi  et   haurito 
plusculo  uncto  corporis  mei  membra  perfricui.     lam- 
que  alternis  conatibus  libratis  brachiis  in  avem  si- 
milem  gestiebam :   nee  ullae  plumulae  nee  usquam 
pmnulae,  sed  plane  pili  mei  crassantur  in  saetas,  sed 
cutis  tenelk  duratur  in  corium  et  in  extimis  palmulis 

1  O% 


I  shall  become  a  bird,  I  will  take  heed  that  I  come 
nigh  no  man's  house :  for  how  prettily  and  wittily 
would  these  matrons  handle  their  lovers  if  they  were 
owls  :  for  when  they  fly  into  any  place  by  night  and 
are  taken,  they  are  nailed  upon  posts,  and  so  they 
are  worthily  rewarded  with  torment  because  it  is 
thought  that  they  bring  evil  fortune  to  the  house  by 
their  ill-omened  flight.  But  I  pray  you  (which  I  had 
almost  forgotten)  tell  me  by  what  means,  when  I  am 
an  owl,  I  shall  return  to  my  pristine  shape  and 
become  Lucius  again  ?  "  "  Fear  not  for  that,"  quoth 
she, "  For  my  mistress  hath  taught  me  the  way  to  bring 
all  to  pass,  and  to  turn  again  the  figures  of  such  as  are 
transformed  into  the  shapes  of  men.  Neither  think  you 
she  did  it  for  any  goodwill  or  favour  to  me,  but  to  the 
end  I  might  help  her  and  minister  this  remedy  to  her 
when  she  returneth  home.  Consider,  I  pray  you,  with 
yourself,  with  what  frivolous  trifles  and  herbs  so  mar- 
vellous a  thing  is  wrought,  for  I  give  her  nothing 
else,  save  a  little  dill  and  laurel-leaves  in  well- 
water,  the  which  she  drinketh,  and  washeth  herself 

Which  when  she  had  often  spoken  she  went  all 
trembling  into  the  chamber,  and  took  a  box  out  of 
the  coffer,  which  I  first  kissed  and  embraced,  and 
prayed  that  I  might  have  good  success  in  my  pur- 
pose to  fly.  And  then  I  put  off  all  my  garments 
and  greedily  thrust  my  hand  into  the  box  and  took 
out  a  good  deal  of  ointment,  and  after  that  I  had 
well  rubbed  every  part  and  member  of  my  body,  1 
hovered  with  mine  arms,  and  moved  myself,  looking 
still  when  I  should  be  changed  into  a  bird  as  Parn- 
phile  was  ;  and  behold  neither  feathers  did  burgeon 
out  nor  appearance  of  wings,  but  verily  my  hair  did 
turn  into  ruggedness  and  my  tender  skin  wore  tough 



perdito  numero  toti  digiti  coguntur  in  singulas  un- 
gulas  et  de  spinae  meae  termino  graridis  cauda  pro- 
cedit :  iam  facies  enormis  et  os   prolixum   et  nares 
hiantes  et  labiae  pendulae,  sic   et  aures  immodicis 
horripilant  auctibus ;    nee.  ullum    miserae    reforma- 
tionis  video  solacium  nisi  quod  mihi  iam  nequeunti 
25  tenere  Fotidem   natura  crescebat.     Ac  dum   salutis 
inopia  cuncta  corporis  mei  considero,  non  avem  me 
sed  asinum  video,  querens  de  facto  Fotidis,  sed  iam 
hutnano  gestu  simul  et  voce  pi-ivatus,   quod  solum 
poteram,  postrema  deiecta  labia  humidis  tamen  oculis 
obliquum  respiciens  ad  illam   tacitus   expostulabam. 
Quae  ubi  primum  me  talem  aspexit,  percussit  faciem 
suam  manibus  infestis,  et  "  Occisa  sum  misera  "  cla- 
mavit :  "  Me  trepidatio  simul  et  festinatio  fefellit  et 
pyxidum  similitudo  decepit.     Sed  bene,  quod  facilior 
reformationis  huius   medela  suppeditat ;    nam   rosis 
tantum    demorsitatis    exibis    asinum    statimque    in 
meum   Lucium  postliminio  redibis.      Atque  utinam 
vesperi  de  more  nobis  parassem  corollas  aliquas,  ne 
moram  talem  patereris  vel  noctis  unius  :  sed  primo 
diluculo  remedium  festinabitur  tibi." 
26      Sic  ilia  maerebat,  ego  vero  quamquam  perfectus 
asinus  et  pro  Lucio  iumentum  sensum  tamen  retine- 
bam  humanum.     Diu  denique    ac    multum    mecum 
ipse  deliberavi  an  nequissimam  facinerosissimamque 
feminam   illam  spissis  calcibus   feiiens  et  mordicus 


and  hard;  my  fingers  and  toes  leaving  the  numbet 
of  five  grew  together  into  hooves,  and  from  the  end 
of  my  back  grew  a  great  tail,  and  now  my  face 
became  monstrous  and  my  mouth  long  and  my 
nostrils  wide,  my  lips  hanging  down,  and  mine  ears 
exceedingly  increased  with  bristles  ;  neither  could 
I  see  any  comfort  of  my  transformation,  save  that 
the  nature  of  my  members  was  increasing  likewise 
to  the  great  discomfiture  of  Fotis,  and  so  with- 
out all  help  (viewing  every  part  of  my  poor 
body)  I  perceived  that  I  was  no  bird,  but  a  plain 
ass.  Then  I  thought  to  blame  Fotis,  but  being 
deprived  as  Avell  of  language  as  human  gesture, 
I  did  all  that  I  could,  and  looked  upon  her  with 
hanging  lips  and  watery  eyes,  as  though  to  re- 
proach her  ;  but  she  (as  soon  as  she  espied  me  in 
such  sort)  smote  her  face  angrily  with  her  hands  and 
cried  out :  "  Alas,  poor  wretch  that  I  am,  I  am 
utterly  cast  away.  The  fear  that  I  was  in  and  my 
haste  hath  beguiled  me,  but  especially  the  mistaking 
of  the  box  hath  deceived  me.  But  it  matters  not  so 
much,  since  sooner  a  medicine  may  be  gotten  for 
this  than  for  any  other  thing  :  for  if  thou  couldst 
get  roses  and  eat  them,  thou  shouldst  be  delivered 
from  the  shape  of  an  ass,  and  become  my  Lucius 
again.  And  would  to  God  I  had  gathered  some 
garlands  this  evening  past  according  to  my  custom ; 
then  shouldst  thou  not  have  continued  an  ass  one 
night's  space  :  but  in  the  morning  I  will  seek  thee 
this  remedy." 

Thus  Fotis  lamented  in  pitiful  sort,  but  I  that  was 
now  a  perfect  ass,  and  for  Lucius  a  brute  beast,  did 
yet  retain  the  sense  and  understanding  of  a  man. 
And  I  did  devise  a  good  space  with  myself,  whether 
it  were  best  for  me  to  kill  this  mischievous  and 


appetens  necare  deberem  :  sed  ab  incepto  temerario 
melior  me  sententia  revocavit,  ne  morte  multata 
Fotide  salutares  mihi  suppetias  rursus  extinguerem. 
Deiecto  itaque  et  quassanti  capite  ac  demussata  tem- 
poral! contumelia  durissimo  casui  meo  serviens  ad 
equum  ilium  vectorem  meum  probissimum  in  stabu- 
lum  concedo,  ubi  alium  etiam  Milonis  quondam  hos- 
pitis  mei  asinum  stabulantem  inveni ;  atque  ego  rebar, 
si  quod  inesset  mutis  animalibus  taciturn  ac  naturale 
sacramentum,  agnitione  ac  miseratione  quadam  in- 
ductum  equum  ilium  meum  hospitium  ac  loca  lautia 
mihi  praebiturum :  sed  pro  lupiter  hospitalis  et 
Fidei  secreta  numina !  Praeclarus  ille  vector  meus 
cum  asino  capita  conferunt  in  meamque  perniciem 
illico  consentiunt  et,  verentes  scilicet  cibariis  suis, 
vix  me  praesepio  videre  proximantem ;  deiectis  auri- 
bus  iam  furentes  infestis  calcibus  insequuntur,  et 
abigor  quam  procul  ab  hordeo  quod  apposueram 
vesperi  meis  manibus  illi  gratissimo  famulo. 
27  Sic  affectus  atque  in  solitudinem  relegatus  arigulo 
stabuli  concesseram,  dumquede  insolentiacollegarum 
meorum  mecum  cogito  atque  in  alterum  diem  auxilio 
rosario  Lucius  denuo  futurus  equi  perfidi  vindictam 
meditor,  respicio  pilae  mediae,  quae  stabuli  trabes 
sustinebat,  in  ipso  fere  meditullio  Eponae  deae  simu- 
lacrum residens  aediculae,  quod  accurate  corollis 
roseis  equidem  recentibus  fuerat  ornatum.  Denique 


wicked  harlot  by  tearing  her  with  my  mouth  and 
kicking  her  with  my  heels.  But  a  better  thought 
reduced  me  from  so  rash  a  purpose,  for  I  feared  lest 
by  the  death  of  Fotis  I  should  be  deprived  of  all 
remedy  and  help.  Then  drooping  and  shaking  my 
head,  and  dissimulating  my  ire  for  the  nonce,  and 
bending  to  my  adversity,  I  went  into  the  stable  to  my 
own  good  horse  that  once  carried  me,  where  I  found 
another  ass  of  Milo's  sometime  mine  host,  and  I  did 
verily  think  that  my  own  horse  (if  there  were  any 
natural  conscience  or  faithfulness  in  brute  beasts) 
would  know  me  and  take  pity  upon  me,  and  proffer 
me  a  good  lodging  for  that  night.  But  fie  upon 
Jupiter  that  is  the  god  of  hospitality  and  the  secret 
divinity  of  Faith  !  For  see,  my  good  horse  and  the 
ass  as  it  were  consented  together  to  work  my  harm  lest 
I  should  eat  up  their  provender,  and  scarce  did  they 
see  me  come  nigh  the  manger,  but  they  put  down 
their  ears  and  kicked  me  with  their  heels  from  their 
meat,  which  I  myself  had  given  that  grateful  servant 
of  mine,  the  horse,  the  night  before. 

Then  I,  being  thus  handled  by  them  and  driven 
away,  got  me  into  a  corner  of  the  stable,  where 
(while  1  remembered  the  uncourtesy  of  my  colleagues, 
and  how  on  the  morrow  I  should  return  to  Lucius  by 
the  help  of  a  rose,  and  then  revenge  myself  on  my 
own  horse)  I  fortuned  to  espy,  on  the  midmost  pillar 
sustaining  the  rafters  of  the  stable,  the  image  of  the 
goddess  Epona,1  in  the  midst  thereof  in  a  small  shrine 
which  was  prettily  garnished  and  decked  round  about 
nth  fair  fresh  roses;  then  in  hope  of  a  present  remedy 
leaped  up  with  my  fore  feet  as  high  as  I  could,  and 

retching  out  my  neck  and  lengthening  my  lips,  I 
>veted  exceedingly  to  snatch  some  roses.     But  in  an 
1  The  patron  goddess  of  horses  and  stables. 


agnito  salutari  praesidio,  pronus  spei,  quantum  ex- 
tensis  prioribus  pedibus  anniti  poteram,  insurgo  valide 
et  cervice  prolixa  nimiumque  porrectis  labiis,  quanto 
maxima  nisu  poteram  corollas  appetebam.     Quod  me 
pessima  scilicet  sorte  conantem  servulus  meus,  cui 
semper  equi  cura  mandata  fuerat,  repente  conspiciens, 
indignatus  exsurgit,  et  "  Quousque  tandem"  inquit, 
"Cantherium    patiemur    istum   paulo   ante    cibariis 
iumentorum,  nunc  etiam  simulacris  deorum  infestum  ? 
Quin  iam  ego  istum  sacrilegum  debilem  claudumque 
reddam,"  et  statim  telum  aliquod  quaeritans  temere 
fascem  lignorum  positum  offendit,  rimatusque  fron- 
dosum  fustem  cunctis  vastiorem  non  prius  miserum 
me  tundere  desiit,  quam  sonitu  vehementi  et  largo 
strepitu  percussis  ianuis,  trepido  etiam  rumore  viciniae 
conclamatis  latronibus  profugit  territus. 
28      Nee  mora,  cum  vi  patefactis  aedibus  globus  latro- 
num  invadit  omnia,  et  singula  domus  membra  cingit 
armata  factio,   et   auxiliis   hinc   inde   convolantibus 
obsistit  discursus  hostilis :   cuncti  gladiis  et  facibus 
instruct!   noctem   illuminant ;    coruscat   in    modum 
ortivi  solis  ignis  et  mucro.     Tune  horreum  quoddam 
satis  validis  claustris  obsaeptum  obseratumque,  quod 
mediis  aedibus  constitutum  gazis  Milonis  fuerat  re- 
fertum,   securibus   validis   aggressi    diffindunt,    quo 
passim   recluso   totas    opes   vehunt   raptimque  con- 
strictis  sarcinis  singuli  partiuntur.     Sed  gestaminum 
modus  numerum  gerulorum  excedit :  tune  opulentiae 
nimiae  nimio  ad  extremas  incitas  deducti,  nos  duos 
asinos  et  equum  meum  productos  e  stabulo  quantum 


evil  hour  did  I  go  about  that  enterprise,  for  behold, 
the  boy  to  whom  I  gave  always  charge  of  my  horse 
suddenly  spied  me  and  ran  in  great  anger  towards  me, 
and  said  :  "  How  long  shall  we  suffer  this  vile  ass, 
that  doth  not  only  eat  up  his  fellows'  meat,  but  also 
would  spoil  the  images  of  the  gods  ?  Why  do  I  not 
make  lame  and  weak  this  wretch  ? "  Therewithal 
looking  about  for  some  cudgel,  he  espied  where 
lay  a  faggot  of  wood,  and  choosing  out  a  crabbed 
truncheon  of  the  biggest  he  could  find,  did  never 
cease  beating  of  me,  poor  wretch,  until  such  time  as 
by  great  noise  and  rumbling,  he  heard  the  doors  of 
the  house  burst  open,  and  the  neighbours  crying 
"  Thieves"  in  lamentable  sort,  so  that,  being  stricken 
in  fear,  he  fled  away. 

And  by  and  by  the  doors  were  broken  down  and  a 
troop  of  thieves  entered  in,  and  kept  every  part  and 
corner  of  the  house  with  weapons.  And  as  men  re- 
sorted to  aid  and  help  them  which  were  within  the 
doors,  the  thieves  resisted  and  kept  them  back,  for 
each  one  was  armed  with  his  sword  and  a  torch  in  his 
hand,  the  glimpses  whereof  did  yield  out  such  light 
as  if  it  had  been  day.  Then  they  broke  open  with 
their  axes  a  great  chest  shut  and  sealed  with  double 
locks,  wherein  was  laid  in  the  middle  of  the  house 
all  the  treasures  of  Milo,  and  ransacked  the  same ; 
which  when  they  had  done,  they  packed  it  up  and 
gave  every  one  a  portion  to  carry  ;  but  when  they 
had  more  bags  to  bear  away  than  men  to  carry  them, 
they  were  at  their  wits'  end  for  the  abundance  of  all 

is  exceeding  wealth, and  so  they  came  into  the  stable 
nd  took  us  two  poor  asses  and  my  horse  and  loaded 
with  the  greatest  trusses  that  we  were  able  to  bear. 

nd  when  we  were  out  of  the  house,  they  followed 

d  threatened  us  with  greet  staves,  and  willed  one  of 


potest  gravioribus  sarcinis  onerant  et  domo  iam  vacua 
minantes  baculis  exigunt,  unoque  de  sociis  ad  specu- 
landum,  qui  de  facinoris  inquisitione  nuntiaret,  relicto, 
nos  crebra  tundentes  per  avia  montium  ducunt  con- 

29  lamque  rerum  tantarum  pondere  et  mentis  ardui 
vertice  et  prolixo  satis  itinere  nihil  a  mortuo  differe- 
bam.  Sed  mihi  sero  quidem,  serio  tamen  subvenit 
ad  auxilium  civile  decurrere  et  interposito  venerabili 
principis  nomine  tot  aerumnis  me  liberare :  cum 
denique  iam  luce  clarissima  vicum  quempiam  fre- 
quentem  et  nundinis  celebrem  praeteriremus,  inter 
ipsas  turbelas,  Graecorum  genuine  sermone  nomen 
augustum  Caesaris  invocare  temptavi,  et "  O  "  quidem 
tantum  disertum  ac  validum  clamitavi,  reliquum 
autem  Caesaris  nomen  enuntiare  non  potui :  aspernati 
latrones  clamorem  absonum  meum,  caedentes  hinc 
inde  miserum  corium  nee  cribris  iam  idoneum  relin- 
quunt.  Sed  tandem  mihi  inopinatam  salutem  lupiter 
ille  tribuit :  nam  cum  multas  villulas  et  casas  amplas 
praeteriremus,  hortulum  quendam  prospexi  satis 
amoenum,  in  quo  praeter  ceteras  gratas  herbulas 
rosae  virgines  matutino  rore  florebant.  His  inhians 
et  spe  salutis  alacer  ac  laetus  propius  accessi,  dumque 
iam  labiis  undantibus  affecto,  consilium  me  subit 
longe  salubrius,  ne  si  rursum  asino  remoto  prodirem 
in  Lucium,  evidens  exitium  inter  manus  latronum 
offenderem  vel  artis  magicae  suspectione  vel  indicii 
futuri  criminatione.  Tune  igitur  a  rosis,  et  quidem 
necessario,  temperavi,  et  casum  praesentem  tolerans 
in  asini  faciem  faena  rodebam. 



their  fellows  to  tarry  behind  and  bring  them  tidings 
what  was  done  concerning  the  robbery,  and  so  they 
beat  us  forward  over  great  hills  out  of  the  high  way. 
But  I,  what  with  my  heavy  burden  and  the  steep 
side  of  the  mountain,  and  my  long  journey,  did 
nothing  differ  from  a  dead  ass  ;  wherefore  I  deter- 
mined with  myself,  though  late  yet  in  good  earnest, 
to  seek  some  remedy  of  the  civil  power,  and  by 
invocation  of  the  awful  name  of  the  Emperor  to  be 
delivered  from  so  many  miseries.  And  on  a  time 
when  it  was  high  day,  as  I  passed  through  a  village 
of  much  people,  where  was  a  great  fair,  I  came 
amongst  a  multitude,  and  I  thought  to  call  upon  the 
renowned  name  of  the  Emperor  in  that  same  Greek 
tongue,  and  I  cried  out  cleverly  and  aloud,  "  O," 
but  "  Caesar  "  I  could  in  no  wise  pronounce  :  but  the 
thieves,  little  regarding  my  unmusical  crying,  did  lay 
on  and  beat  my  wretched  skin  in  such  sort,  that  after 
it  was  neither  apt  nor  meet  for  leather  nor  sieves. 
Howbeit,  at  last  Jupiter  ministered  unto  me  an 
unhoped  remedy.  For  when  we  had  passed  by  many 
farms  and  great  houses,  I  fortuned  to  espy  a  pleasant 
garden,  wherein,  besides  many  other  flowers  of 
delectable  hue,  were  new  and  fresh  roses  that  dripped 
with  the  morning  dew,  and  gaping  on  these  (being  very 
joyful  and  brisk  to  catch  some  as  I  passed  by)  I  drew 
nearer  and  nearer.  Now  while  my  lips  watered  upon 
them,  I  thought  of  a  better  advice  more  profitable  for 

ic  :  lest  if  from  being  an  ass  I  should  become  Lucius 
lin,    I    might  fall   into  the  hands  of  the  thieves, 

id  either  by  suspicion  that  I  were  some  witch,  or 

>r  fear  that  I  would  utter  their  theft,  I  should  be  slain 
'a  surety  ;  wherefore  I  abstained  for  that  time,  for  it 
is  needful,  from  eating  of  the  roses,  and  (enduring 

iiy  present  adversity)  I  ate  hay  as  other  asses  did. 



1  DIEM  ferme  circa  medium,  cum  iam  flagrantia  soils 
caleretur,  in  pago  quodam  apud  notos  ac  familiares 
latronibus  senes  devertimus  ;  sic  enim  primus  aditus 
et   sermo  prolixus  et  oscula  mutua,  quamvis  asino, 
sentire  praestabant :  nam   et  rebus    eos    quibusdarn 
dorso   meo    depromptis    munerabantur,    et    secretis 
gannitibus,  quod  essent  latrocinio  partae,  videbantur 
indicare.     lamque    nos    omni    sarcina    levigates   in 
pratum  proximum  passim  libero  pastui  tradidere,  nee 
me    cum   asino    vel    equo   meo    compascuus    coetus 
attinere  potuit   adhuc    insolitum   alioquin   prandere 
faenum  ;  sed  plane  pone  stabulum  prospectum  hortu- 
lum  iam  fame   perditus  fidenter  invado  et,  quamvis 
crudis    holeribus,    affatim    tamen    ventrem    sagino, 
deosque   comprecatus    omnes   cuncta    prospectabam 
loca,  sicubi   forte   conterminis   in    hortulis    candens 
repperirem  rosarium.     Nam  et  ipsa  solitudo  iam  mihi 
bonam    fiduciam    tribuebat,    si    devius   et   frutectis 
absconditus  sumpto  remedio  de  iumenti  quadripedis 
incurvo  gradu  rursum  erectus  in  hominem,  inspec- 
tante  nullo,  resurgerem. 

2  Ergo  igitur  cum  in  isto  cogitationis  salo  fluctuarem, 
aliquanto  longius  video  frondosi  nemoris  convallem 


WHEN  noon  was  come,  and  now  the  broiling  heat  of 
the  sun  had  most  power,  we  turned  into  a  village  to 
certain  old  men  of  the  thieves'  acquaintance  and 
friends,  for  verily  their  meeting  and  embracing 
together  did  give  me  (poor  ass)  cause  to  deem  the 
same  :  and  they  took  the  truss  from  my  back,  and 
gave  them  part  of  the  treasure  that  was  in  it,  and 
they  seemed  to  whisper  and  tell  them  that  it  was 
stolen  goods  ;  and  after  that  we  were  unladen  of  our 
burdens  they  let  us  loose  into  a  meadow  to  pasture, 
but  I  would  not  feed  there  with  my  own  horse  and 
Milo's  ass,  for  that  I  was  not  wont  to  eat  hay,  but  I 
must  seek  my  dinner  in  some  other  place.  Where- 
fore I  leaped  into  a  garden  which  was  behind  the 
stable,  and  being  well  nigh  perished  with  hunger, 
although  I  could  find  nothing  there  but  raw  and 
green  salads,  yet  I  filled  my  hungry  guts  therewithal 
abundantly,  and  praying  unto  all  the  gods,  I  looked 
about  in  every  place  if  I  could  espy  any  roses  in  the 
gardens  by,  and  my  solitary  being  alone  did  put  me 
in  good  hope,  that  if  I  could  find  any  remedy,  being 
far  from  the  public  road  and  hidden  by  the  bushes,  I 
should  presently  out  of  the  low  gait  of  a  beast  be 
changed  out  of  every  one's  sight  into  a  man  walking 

Now  while  I  tossed  on  the  flood  of  these  cogita- 
tions, I  looked  about,  and  behold  I  saw  afar  off  a 
K  145 


umbrosam,  cuius  inter  varias  herbulas  et  laetissima 
virecta  fulgentium  rosarum  mineus  color  renidebat : 
iamque   apud   mea    non   usquequaque    feriria   prae- 
cordia  Veneris   et  Gratiarum  lucum   ilium    arbitra- 
bar,  cuius  inter  opaca  secreta  floris  genialis  regius 
nitor  relucebat.   \  Tune  invocato   hilaro   atque  pro- 
spero  Eventu  cursu  me  concito  proripio,  ut  Hercule 
ipse  sentirem  non   asiiium  me,  verum  etiam  equum 
currulem  nimio  velocitatis  refectum.    Sed  agilis  atque 
praeclarus   ille   conatus  fortunae   meae  scaevitatem 
anteire   non  potuit ;    iam   enim  loco  proximus   non 
illas  rosas  teneras  et  amoenas,  madidas  divini  roris  et 
nectaris,  quas  rubi  felices  beatae  spinae  generant,  at 
ne   convallem   quidem    usquam,    nisi    tantum    ripae 
fluvialis  marginem  densis  arboribus  saeptam  video : 
hae  arbores  in  lauri  faciem  prolixe  foliatae  pariunt  in 
modum  floris  inodori  porrectos  caliculos  modice  puni- 
cantes,  quos    equidem   fragrantes   minime    rurestri 
vocabulo  vulgus   indoctum  rosas  laureas   appellant, 
3  quarumque  cuncto  pecori  cibus  letalis  est.      Talibus 
fatis  implicitus  et  iam  ipsam  saluternrecusans  sponte 
illud  venenum  rosarium  sumere  gestiebam  ;  sed  dum 
cunctanter   accedo    decerpere,    iuvenis    quidam,   ut 
mihi    videbatur,   hortulanus,    cuius    omnia    prorsus 
holera  vastaveram,  tanto  damno  cognito,  cum  grandi 
baculo  furens  decurrit,  arreptumque  me  totum  plagis 
obtundit  adusque  vitae  ipsius  periculum,  nisi  tandem 
sapienter  alioquin  ipse  mihi  tulissem  auxilium  :    nam 
lumbis  elevatis  in  altuni,  pedum  posterioribus  calci- 


shadowed  valley  adjoining  to  a  wood,  where,  amongst 
divers  other  herbs  and  pleasant  verdures,  I  thought 
I  saw  many  flourishing  roses  of  bright  damask  colour. 
So  that  I  said  within  my  mind,  which  was  not  wholly 
bestial :  "  Verily  the  place  is  the  grove  of  Venus  and 
the  Graces,  where  secretly  glittereth  the  royal  hue 
of  so  lively  and  delectable  a  flower."  Then  I,  desiring 
the  help  of  the  god  of  good  fortune,  ran  lustily 
towards  the  wood,  in  so  much  that  I  felt  myself  no 
more  an  ass  but  a  swift-coursing  horse,  but  my  agility 
and  quickness  could  not  prevent  the  cruelty  of  my 
fortune ;  for  when  I  came  to  the  place,  I  perceived 
that  they  were  no  roses  neither  tender  nor  pleasant, 
neither  moistened  with  the  heavenly  drops  of  dew 
nor  celestial  liquor,  which  grow  out  of  the  rich 
thicket  and  thorns.  Neither  did  I  perceive  that 
there  was  any  valley  at  all,  but  only  the  bank  of  the 
river  environed  with  great  thick  trees,  which  had 
long  branches  like  unto  laurel,  and  bear  a  flower 
without  any  manner  of  scent  but  somewhat  red  of 
hue,  and  the  common  people  call  them  by  the  name 
of  laurel-roses,  which  are  very  poisonous  to  all  manner 
of  beasts.  Then  was  I  so  entangled  with  unhappy 
fortune,  that  I  little  esteemed  mine  own  life,  and 
went  willingly  to  eat  of  those  roses,  though  I  knew 
them  to  be  present  poison.  But  as  I  drew  near  very 
slowly,  I  saw  a  young  man  that  seemed  to  be  the 
gardener  come  upon  me,  the  same  that  I  had 
devoured  up  all  his  herbs  in  the  garden,  and  he, 
knowing  now  full  well  his  great  loss,  came  swearing 
with  a  great  staff  in  his  hand,  and  laid  upon  me  in 
such  sort  that  I  was  well  nigh  dead  ;  but  I  speedily 
devised  some  remedy  for  myself,  for  I  lifted  up  my 
legs  and  kicked  him  with  my  hinder  heels,  so  that  I 
left  him  lying  at  the  hill  foot  well  nigh  slain,  and  so 



bus  iactatis  in  eum  crebriter,  iam  mulcato  graviter 
atque  iacente  contra  proclive  mentis  attigui,  fuga 
me  liberavi.     Sed  illico  mulier  quaepiam,  uxor  eius 
scilicet,  simul  eum  prostratum   et   semianimem    ex 
edito  despexit,  eiulabili  cum  plangore  ad  eum  statim 
prosilit,  ut  sui  videlicet  miseratione  mihi  praesens 
crearet  exitium  :    cuncti  enim  pagani,   fletibus   eius 
exciti,  statim  couclamant  canes  atque  ad  me  lanian- 
dum  rabie    perciti  ferrent   impetum  passim   cohor- 
tantur.     Tune  igitur  procul  dubio  iam  morti  proxi- 
mus,  cum  viderem  canes  et  modo  magnos  et  numero 
multos  et  ursis  ac  leonibus  ad  compugnandum  idoneos 
in  me  convocatos  exasperari,  e  re  nata  capto  consilio, 
fugam  desino  ac  me  retrorsus  celeri  gradu  rursum  in 
stabulum  quo  deverteramus  recipio.     At  illi,  canibus 
iam  aegre  cohibitis,  arreptum  me  loro  quam  valido 
ad  ansulam   quandam  destinatum  rursum  caedendo 
confecissent   profecto,   nisi    dolore   plagarum   alvus 
artata  crudisque  illis  oleribus    abundans  et  lubrico 
fluxu  saucia,  fimo  fistulatim  excusso,  quosdam  extremi 
liquoris  aspergine,  alios  putore  nidoris  faetidi,  a  meis 
iam  quassis  scapulis  abegisset. 

4  Nee  mora,  cum  iam  in  meridiem  prono  iubare  rur- 
sum nos  ac  praecipue  me  longe  gravius  onustum 
producunt  illi  latrones  stabulo :  iamque  confecta 
bona  parte  itineris  et  viae  spatio  defectus  et  sar- 
cinae  pondere  depressus  ictibusque  fustium  fatigatus 
atque  etiam  ungulis  extritis  iam  claudus  et  titubans, 
rivulum  quendam  serpentis  leniter  aquae  proptei 


1  ran  away  :  incontinently  came  out  a  certain  woman, 
doubtless  his  wife,  who,  seeing  from  above  her 
husband  lying  half  dead,  cried  and  howled  in  pitiful 
sort,  hasting  towards  her  husband,  to  the  intent  that 
by  her  loud  cries  she  might  purchase  to  me  present 
destruction  ;  for  all  the  persons  of  the  town,  moved 
and  raised  by  her  noise,  came  forth  and  cried  for 
dogs,  and  hied  them  on  madly  to  tear  me  down.  Out 
came  a  great  company  of  bandogs  and  mastiffs,  more 
fit  to  pull  down  bears  and  lions  than  me,  whom  when 
I  beheld  I  thought  vei'ily  that  I  should  presently  die, 
so  that  I  took  what  counsel  I  might  from  the  occasion, 
and  thought  no  more  of  flight,  but  turned  myself 
about  and  ran  as  fast  as  ever  I  might  to  the  stable 
whither  we  had  lodged.  Then  the  men  of  the  town 
called  in  their  dogs,  which  they  scarce  could  hold, 
and  took  me,  and  bound  me  to  the  staple  of  a  post 
with  a  great  thong,  and  scourged  me  till  I  was  well 
nigh  dead  :  and  they  would  undoubtedly  have  slain 
me,  had  it  not  come  to  pass  that  my  belly,  narrowed 
with  the  pain  of  their  beating  and  reeking  with  the 
green  herbs  that  lay  therein,  caught  such  a  looseness 
that  I  all  besprinkled  the  faces  of  some  with  my 
liquid  dung,  and  with  the  filthy  stench  thereof  en- 
forced the  others  to  leave  my  sides  now  well  nigh 

Not  long  after,  which  was  now  towards  eventide, 
the  thieves  loaded  us  again,  and  especially  me,  with 
the  heaviest  burden,  and  brought  us  forth  out  of  the 
stable,  and  when  we  had  gone  a  good  part  of  our 
journey,  what  with  the  long  way,  my  great  burden, 
the  beating  of  staves,  and  my  worn  hooves,  lame  and 
tottering,  I  was  so  weary  that  I  could  scarcely  go ; 
then  as  I  walked  by  a  little  river  running  with  fair 
water,  I  said  to  myself:  "  Behold,  now  I  have  found 


insistens,  subtil  em  occasionem  feliciter  nactus  cogi 
tabam   totum  memet   flexis   scite    cruribus  pronum 
abicere,  certus  atque  obstinatus  nullis  verberibus  ad 
ingrediundum  exsurgere,  immo  etiam  paratus  non 
fusti   tantum    sed    machaera   perfossus    occumbere. 
Rebar  enim  iam  me  prorsus  exanimatum  ac  debilem 
merer!   causariam  missionem,  certe  latrones  partim 
impatientia   morae,   partim    studio  festinatae  fugae, 
dorsi  mei  sarcinam  duobus  ceteris  iumentis  distribu- 
turos,   meque    in  altioris   vindictae    vicem   lupis  et 
5  vulturiis  praedam  relicturos.     Sed  tarn  bellum  con- 
silium    meum    praevertit    sors   deterrima :    namque 
ille  alius  asinus,  divinato  et  antecapto  meo  cogitatu, 
statim  se  mentita  lassitudine  cum  rebus  totis  offudit, 
iacensque  in  mortuum  non  fustibus,  non  stimulis,  ac 
ne  cauda    et   auribus   cruribusque    undique   versu'm 
elevatis  temptavit  exsurgere,  quoad  tandem  fustibus, 
postumae  spei  fatigati  secumque  collocuti,  ne  tarn  diu 
mortuo,  immo   vero   lapideo  asino  servientes  fugam 
morarentur,   sarcinis   eius  mihi  equoque   distributis, 
destricto   gladio  poplites   eius   totos   amputant,    ac 
paululum  a  via  retractum  per  altissimum  praeceps  in 
vallem  proximam  etiam  nunc  spirantem  praecipitant. 
Tune  ego  miseri  commilitonis  fortunam  cogitans  statui 
iam  dolis  abiectis  et  fraudibus  asinum  me  bonae  frugi 
dominis  exhibere  :  nam  et  secum  eos  animadverteram 
colloquentes,  quod  in  proximo  nobis  esset   habenda 
mansio  et  totius  viae  finis  quieta  eorumque  esset  sedes 



a  good  occasion.  For  I  will  fall  down  when  I  come 
yonder,  bending  my  legs  beneath  me,  and  surely  I 
will  not  rise  again  for  any  scourging  or  beating,  and 
not  only  will  I  defy  the  cudgel,  but  even  be  pierced 
by  the  sword,  if  they  shall  use  it  upon  me."  And 
the  cause  why  I  determined  so  to  do  was  this :  I 
thought  that  I  was  so  utterly  feeble  and  weak  that 
I  deserved  my  discharge  for  ill  health,  and  certainly 
that  the  robbers  (partly  for  that  they  would  not  stay  in 
their  journey,  partly  in  haste  to  flee)  would  take  off 
the  burden  from  my  back,  and  put  it  upon  my  two 
fellows,  and  so  for  my  further  punishment  leave  me  as 
a  prey  to  the  wolves  and  ravenous  beasts.  But  evil 
fortune  prevented  so  good  a  consideration  ;  for  the 
other  ass,  being  of  the  same  purpose  that  I  was  of, 
and  forestalling  me,  by  feigned  and  coloured  weari- 
ness fell  down  first  with  all  his  burden  upon  the 
ground  as  though  he  were  dead,  and  he  would  not 
rise  neither  with  beating  nor  pricking,  nor  stand 
upon  his  feet,  though  they  pulled  him  all  about  by 
the  tail,  by  his  legs,  and  by  his  ears ;  which  when  the 
thieves  beheld,  as  without  all  hope,  they  said  one  to 
another  :  "  What,  should  we  stand  here  so  long  about 
a  dead  or  rather  a  stony  ass  ?  Let  us  be  gone  "  ;  and 
so  they  took  his  burden  and  divided  some  to  me  and 
some  to  my  horse.  And  then  they  drew  their  swords 
and  cut  through  all  his  hamstrings,  and  dragged  him 
a  little  from  the  way,  and  threw  his  body  while  he 

et  breathed  from  the  point  of  a  hill  down  into  a 
•eat  valley.  Then  I,  considering  with  myself  of  the 

vil  fortune  of  my  poor  companion,  purposed  now  to 
rget  all  subtlety  and  deceit  and  to  play  the  good  ass 
to  get  my  masters'  favour,  for  I  perceived  by  their 
talk  that  we  were  well  nigh  come  home  to  our 
journey's  end  where  they  lived  and  had  their 



ilia  et  habitatio.  dementi  deiiique  transmisso  clivulo, 
pervenimus  ad  locum  destinatum,  ubi  rebus  totis 
exsolutis  atque  intus  conditis,  iam  pondere  liberatus 
lassitudinem  vice  lavacri  pulvereis  volutatibus  dige- 

6  Res  ac  tempus  ipsum  locorum  speluncaeque  illius 
quam  latrones  inhabitabant,1  descriptionem  exponere 
flagitat :  nam  et  meum  simul  periclitabor  ingenium, 
et  faxo  vos  quoque  an  mente  etiam  sensuque  fuerim 
asinus  sedulo  sentiatis.  Monshorridus  silvestribusque 
frondibus  umbrosus  et  in  primis  altus  fuit :  huius  per 
obliqua  devexa,  qua  saxis  asperrimis  et  ob  id  inaccessis 
cingitur,,  convalles  lacunosae  cavaeque  nimium  spinetis 
aggeratae  et  quaquaversus  repositae  naturalem  tute- 
lam  praebentes  ambiebant.  De  summo  vertice  fons 
afluens  bullis  ingentibus  scaturribat,  perque  prona 
delapsus  evomebat  undas  argenteas,  iamque  rivulis 
pluribus  dispersus  ac  valles  illas  agminibus  stagnanti- 
bus  irrigans  in  modum  stipati  maris  vel  ignavi  fluminis 
cuncta  cohibebat.  Insurgit  speluncae,  qua  margines 
montanae  desinunt,  turris  ardua  caulae  firma  solidis 
cratibus,  ovili  stabulationi  commoda,  porrectis  undi- 
que  lateribus ;  ante  fores  exigui  tramites  vice  structi 
parietis  attenduntur  :  ea  tu  bono,  certe  meo  periculo, 
latronum  dixeris  atria.  Nee  iuxta  quicquam  quam 
parva  casula  cannulis  temere  contecta,  quo  specula- 
tores  e  numero  latronum,  ut  postea  comperi,  sorte 
ducti  noctibus  excubabant. 

7  Ibi  cum  singuli  derepsissent  stipatis  artubus,  nobis 
ante  ipsas  fores  loro  valido  destinatis,  anum  quandam 
curvatam  gravi  senio,  cui  soli  salus  atque  tutela  tot 
numero  iuvenum  commissa  videbatur,  sic  infesti  com- 
pellant :  "  Etiamne  tu,  busti  cadaver  extremum  et 
i  The  MSS  have  the  present  inhabitant.  The  imperfect, 
as  Oudendorp  saw,  seems  to  be  required: 



dwelling.  And  after  that  we  had  passed  over 
a  little  hill,  we  came  to  our  appointed  place,  where 
when  we  were  unladen  of  our  burdens  and  all  things 
carried  in,  I  tumbled  and  wallowed  in  the  dust  to 
refresh  myself  instead  of  water. 

The  thing  and  the  time  compel  me  to  make 
description  of  the  places  and  especially  of  the  den 
where  the  thieves  did  inhabit :  I  will  prove  my  wit 
what  I  can  do,  and  then  consider  you  whether  I  was 
an  ass  in  judgement  and  sense,  or  no.  First  there 
was  an  exceeding  great  hill  compassed  about  with  big 
trees,  very  high,  with  many  turning  bottoms,  sur- 
rounded by  sharp  rocks,  whereby  it  was  inaccessible  ; 
there  were  many  winding  and  hollow  valleys  en- 
vironed with  thickets  and  thorns,  and  naturally 
fortressed  round  about.  From  the  top  of  the  hill  ran 
a  spring  both  leaping  and  bubbling  which  poured 
down  the  steep  slope  its  silvery  waves,  and  then 
scattering  abroad  into  many  little  brooks  watered  all 
the  valleys  below,  that  it  seemed  like  unto  a  sea 
enclosed,  or  a  standing  flood.  Before  the  den,  where 
was  no  more  hill,  stood  a  high  tower,  and  at  the  foot 
thereof,  and  on  either  side,  were  sheep-cots  fenced 
and  wattled  with  clay ;  before  the  gate  of  the  house 
were  walls  enclosing  a  narrow  path,  in  such  sort  that 
I  well  warrant  you  would  judge  it  to  be  a  very  den  for 
thieves,  and  there  was  nothing  else  near  save  a  little 
cot  covered  roughly  with  thatch,  wherein  the  thieves 
did  nightly  accustom  to  watch  by  order,  as  after  I 

And  when  they  were  all  crept  crouching  into  the 
house,  and  we  fast  tied  with  strong  halters  at  the 
door,  they  began  to  chide  with  an  old  woman  there, 
crooked  with  age,  who  had  the  government  and  rule 
of  all  those  young  men,  and  said  ;  "  How  is  it,  old 



vitae  dedecus  primum  et  Orel  fastidium  solum,  sic 
nobis  otiosa  domi  residens  lusitabis,  nee  nostris  tarn 
magnis  tamque  periculosis  laboribus  solacium  de  tarn 
sera  refectione  tribues  ?  Quae  diebus  ac  noctibus  nil 
quicquam  rei  quam  merum  saevienti  ventri  tuo  soles 
aviditer  ingurgitare."  Tremens  ad  haec  et  stridenti 
vocula  pavida  sic  anus  :  "  At  vobis,  fortissimi  fide- 
lissimique  mei  hospitatores  iuvenes,  affatina  cuncta 
suavi  sapore  percocta  pulmenta  praesto  sunt,  panis 
numerosus,  yinum  probe  calicibus  exfricatis  affluenter 
immissum,  et  ex  more  calida  tumultuario  lavacro  vestro 
praeparata."  In  fine  sermonis  huius  statim  sese  de- 
vestiunt,  nudatique  et  flammae  largissimae  vapore 
recreati  calidaque  perfusi  et  oleo  peruncti  mensas 
dapibus  largiter  instructas  accumbunt. 
8  Commodum  cubuerant,  et  ecce  quidam  longe  plures 
numero  iuvenes  adveniunt  alii,  quos  incunctanter 
adaeque  latrones  arbitrarere,  nam  et  ipsi  praedas 
aureorum  argentariorumque  nummorum  ac  vascu- 
lorum  vestisque  sericae  et  intextae  filis  aureis  in- 
vehebant :  hi  simili  lavacro  refoti  inter  toros  sociorum 
sese  reponunt.  Tune  sorte  ducti  ministerium  faciunt: 
estur  ac  potatur  incondite  pulmentis  acervatim,  pani- 
bus  aggeratim,  poculis  agminatim  ingestis ;  clamore 
ludunt,  strepitu  cantillant,  conviciis  iocantur,  ac  iam 
cetera  semiferis  Lapithis  evantibus  l  Centaurisque 
similia.  Tune  inter  eos  unus,  qui  robore  ceteros 
antistabat,  "  Nos  quidem"  inquit  "Milonis  Hypa- 
tini  domum  fortiter  expugnavimus.  Praeter  tantam 

1  Nic.  Heinsius'  ingenious  emendation  for  the  meaningless 
ebcinibus  or  tebainibus  of  the  MSS, 



witch,  old  trot,  that  art  the  shame  of  life  and 
rejected  of  very  death,  that  thou  sittest  idly  all  day 
at  home,  and  (having  no  regard  to  our  perilous 
labours)  hast  provided  nothing  for  our  suppers  thus 
late,  but  sittest  doing  nought  but  swilling  wine  into 
that  greedy  belly  of  thine  from  morning  to  night  ?  " 
Then  the  old  woman  trembled  and  began  to  say  in 
a  terrified  and  harsh  voice :  "  Behold,  my  puissant 
and  faithful  masters,  you  shall  have  meat  and  pottage 
enough  by  and  by,  cooked  with  a  sweet  savour. 
Here  is  first  store  of  bread,  wine  plenty,  filled  in 
clean  rinsed  pots,  likewise  hot  water  prepared  to 
bathe  you  hastily  after  your  wont."  Which  when 
she  had  said,  they  put  off  all  their  garments  and 
refreshed  themselves  by  a  great  fire,  and  after  that 
they  were  washed  with  the  hot  water  and  anointed 
with  oil,  they  sat  down  at  the  table  garnished  with 
all  kinds  of  dainty  meat. 

Now  they  were  no  sooner  set  'down,  but  in  came 
another  company  of  young  men,  more  in  number 
than  was  before,  whom  you  would  judge  at  once 
likewise  to  be  thieves  ;  for  they  also  brought  in  their 
prey  of  gold  and  silver  money,  and  plate,  and  robes 
both  silken  and  gold-embroidered,  and  when  they 
had  likewise  washed,  they  sat  amongst  the  rest,  and 
casting  lots  they  served  one  another  by  order.  The 
thieves  drank  and  ate  exceedingly,laying  out  the  meat 
in  heaps,  the  bread  in  mounds,  and  the  wine  cups  like 
a  marching  army,  crying,  laughing,  and  making  such 
noise,  that  I  thought  I  was  amongst  the  tyrannous 
and  wild  drunken  Lapiths  and  Centaurs.  At  length 
one  of  them,  more  stout  than  the  rest,  spoke  in 
this  sort :  "  We  verily  have  manfully  conquered  the 
house  of  Milo  of  Hypata,  and  besides  all  the  riches 
and  treasure  which  by  force  we  have  brought  away, 


fortunae  copiam,  quam  nostra  virtute  nacti  sumus,  et 
incolumi  numero  castra  nostra  petivimus  et,  si  quid  ad 
rem  facit,  octo  pedibus  auctiores  remeavimus.  At  vos 
qui  Boeotias  urbes  appetistis,  ipso  duce  vestro  fortis- 
simo Lamacho  deminuti  debilem  numerum  reduxistis, 
cuius  salutem  merito  sarcinis  istis  quas  advexistis 
omnibus  antetulerim.  Sed  ilium  quidem  utcumque 
nimia  virtus  sua  peremit ;  inter  inclitos  reges  ac  duces 
proeliorum  tanti  viri  memoria  celebrabitur  :  enim  vos 
bonae  frugi  latrones  inter  furta  parva  atque  servilia 
timidule  per  balneas  et  aniles  cellulas  reptantes 
scrutariam  facitis." 

Suscipit  unus  ex  illo  posteriore  numero :  "  Tune 
solus  ignoras  longe  faciliores  ad  expugnandum  domus 
esse  maiores  ?  Quippe  quod,  licet  numerosa  familia 
latis  deversetur  aedibus,  tamen  quisque  magis  suae 
saluti  quam  domini  consulat  opibus  :  frugi  autem  et 
solitarii  homines  fortunam  parvam,  vel  certe  satis 
amplam,  dissimulanter  obtectam  protegunt  acrius  et 
sanguinis  sui  periculo  muniunt.  Res  ipsa  denique 
fidem  sermoni  meo  dabit:  vix  enim  Thebas  heptapylos 
accessimuSj  quod  est  huic  disciplinae  primarium 
studium,  sedulo  fortunas  inquirebamus  popularium. 
Nee  nos  denique  latuit  Chryseros  quidam  nummu- 
larius,  copiosae  pecuniae  dominus,  qui  metu  officiorum 
ac  munerum  publicorum  magnis  artibus  magnam  dissi- 
mulabat  opulentiam  :  denique  solus  ac  solitarius  parva 
sed  satis  munita  domuncula  contentus,  pannosus  alio- 
quin  ac  sordidus  aureos  folles  incubabat. 


we  are  all  come  home  safe,  none  being  lost,  and  are 
increased  the  more,  if  it  be  worthy  of  mention,  by 
the  eight  feet  of  this  horse  and  this  ass.  But  you, 
that  have  roved  about  among  the  towns  of  Boeotia, 
have  lost  your  valiant  captain  Lamachus,  whose  loss 
I  more  regarded  than  all  this  treasure  which  you 
have  brought.  But  it  is  his  own  bravery  that  hath 
destroyed  him,  and  therefore  the  memory  of  him 
shall  be  renewed  for  ever  amongst  the  most  noble 
kings  and  valiant  captains  ;  but  you  accustom  when 
you  go  abroad,  like  doughty  robbers  indeed,  to  creep 
through  every  corner  and  hole  for  every  trifle,  doing 
a  paltry  business  in  baths  and  the  huts  of  aged 

Then  one  of  them  that  came  last  answered  :  "  Why, 
are  you  only  ignorant,  that  the  greater  the  house 
is,  the  sooner  it  may  be  robbed  and  spoiled?  For 
though  the  family  of  servants  be  great  and  dispersed 
in  divers  lodgings,  yet  every  man  had  rather  defend 
his  life  than  save  at  his  own  hazard  the  riches  of  his 
master ;  but  when  the  people  be  few  and  poor  and 
live  alone,  then  will  they  hide  and  protect  very 
fiercely,  even  at  the  danger  of  their  lives,  their  sub- 
stance, how  little  or  great  soever  it  be.  And  to  the 
intent  you  will  believe  me,  I  will  show  you  our  story 
as  an  example.  We  were  scarce  come  nigh  unto 
seven-gated  Thebes,  and  began  at  once  to  enquire  of 
the  fortunes  of  the  greatest  men  thereof,  which  is 
the  fountain  of  our  art  and  science,  and  we  learned 
at  length  where  a  rich  chuff  called  Chryseros  did 
dwell,  who,  for  fear  of  offices  and  burdens  in  the  public 
weal,  with  great  pains  dissimulated  his  estate  and 
lived  sole  and  solitary  in  a  small  cot  (howbeit  well 
fortified)  and  huddled  daily  in  ragged  and  torn 
apparel  over  his  bags  of  gold.  Wherefore  we  devised 



placuit  ad  hunc   primum  ferremus  aditum,  ut  con- 
tempta  pugna  manus  unicae  nullo  negotio  cunctis 

10  opibus  otiose  potiremur.  Nee  mora,  cum  noctis 
initio  foribus  ems  praestolamur,  quas  neque  sublevare 
neque  dimovere  ac  ne  perfringere  quidem  nobis  vide- 
batur,  ne  vulvarum  sonus  cunctam  viciniam  nostro 
suscitaret  exitio.  Tune  itaque  sublimis  ille  vexil- 
larius  noster  Lamachus  spectatae  virtutis  suae  fiducia, 
qua  clavi  immittendae  foramen  patebat  sensim  im- 
missa  manu,  claustrum  evellere  gestiebat :  sed  dudum 
scilicet  omnium  bipedum  nequissimus  Chryseros 
vigilans  et  singula  rerum  sentiens,  lenem  gradum  et 
obnixum  silentium  tolerans  paulatim  arrepit,  gran- 
dique  clavo  manum  ducis  nostri  repente  nisu  fortis- 
simo ad  ostii  tabulam  offigit  et  exitiabili  nexu 
patibulatum  1  relinquens  gurgustioli  sui  tectum 
ascendit  atque  inde  contentissima  voce  clamitans 
rogansque  vicinos  et  unumquemque  proprio  nomine 
ciens  et  salutis  communis  admonens,  diffamat  in- 
cendio  repentino  domum  suam  possideri :  sic  unus- 
quisque  proximi  periculi  confinio  territus  suppetiatum 

11  decurruntanxii.  Tune  nos  in  ancipiti  periculo  consti- 
tuti  vel  opprimendi  nostri  vel  deserendi  socii  reme- 
dium  e  re  nata  validum  eo  volente  comminiscimus : 
antesignani  nostri  partem,  qua  manus  humerum 
subit,  ictu  per  articulum  medium  temperate  prorsus 
abscidimus  atque  ibi  brachio  relicto,  multis  laciniis 
dffulto  vulnere,  ne  stillae  sanguinis  vestigium  pro- 
derent.  ceterum  Lamachum  raptim  reportamus  ;  ac, 

1  MSS  patibulum.    The  emendation  is  variously  ascribed  to 
Scaliger  or  Vulcaniug. 



With  ourselves  to  go  first  to  his  house  and  spoil  him 
of  all  his  riches,  which  we  thought  we  should  easily 
do  if  we  had  but  to  fight  against  him  alone.  And  at 
once  when  night  came  we  quickly  drew  towards  his 
door,  which  we  thought  best  neither  to  move  it,  nor 
lift  it  out  of  the  hinges,  and  we  would  not  break  it 
open  lest  by  the  noise  we  should  raise  up  (to  our 
harm)  the  neighbours  by.  Then  our  strong  and 
valiant  captain  JLamachus,  trusting  his  own  strength 
and  force,  thrust  in  his  hand  through  a  hole  of  the 
door,  which  was  made  for  the  key,  and  thought  to 
pull  back  the  bolt ;  but  the  covetous  caitiff  Chryseros, 
vilest  of  all  that  go  on  two  feet,  being  awake  and 
seeing  all,  but  making  no  noise,  came  softly  to  the  door 
and  caught  his  hand,  and  with  a  great  nail  nailed  it 
fast  to  a  post  of  the  gate,  which  when  he  had  done, 
and  had  left  him  thus  crucified,  he  ran  up  to 
a  high  chamber  of  his  hovel,  and  in  a  very  loud  voice 
called  every  one  of  his  neighbours  by  name,  desiring 
them  to  look  to  their  common  safety  with  all  possible 
speed,  for  his  house  was  afire.  Then  every  one,  for 
fear  of  the  danger  that  was  nigh  him,  came  running 
out  to  aid  him ;  wherewith  we  (fearing  our  present 
peril)  knew  not  what  was  best  to  be  done,  whether 
we  should  leave  our  companion  there,  or  yield  our- 
selves to  die  with  him  ;  but  by  his  consent  we  devised 
a  better  way,  for  we  cut  through  the  joint  of  this  our 
leader  where  the  arm  joins  to  the  shoulder,  and  so 
let  it  hang  there,  and  then  bound  up  his  wound 
with  clouts  lest  we  should  be  traced  by  the  drops  of 
blood,  and  so  we  took  all  that  was  left  of  Lamachus 
and  led  him  away.v  Now  when  we  hurried  along, 
trembling  for  our  affection  to  him,  and  were  so  nigh 
pursued  that  we  were  in  present  danger,  and 
Lumachus  could  not  keep  our  company  by  reason 



dum  trepidi  religionis  urguemur  gravi  tumultu  et 
instantis  periculi  metu  terremur  ad  fugam,  nee  vel 
sequi  propere  vel  remanere  tuto  potest  vir  sublimis 
animi  virtutisque  praecipuus,  multis  nos  affatibus 
multisque  precibus  querens  adhortatur  per  dexteram 
Martis,  per  fidem  sacramenti  bonum  commilitonem 
cruciatu  simul  et  captivitate  liberaremus :  cur  enim 
manui,  quae  rapere  et  iugulare  sola  posset,  fortem 
latronem  supervivere  ?  Sat  se  beatum  qui  manu 
socia  volens  occumberet.  Cumque  nulli  nostrum 
spontale  parricidium  suadens  persuadere  posset, 
manu  reliqua  sumptum  gladium  suum  diuque  de- 
osculatum,  per  medium  pectus  ictu  fortissimo  trans- 
adigit.  Tune  nos  magnanimi  ducis  vigore  venerato 
corpus  reliquum  veste  lintea  diligenter  convolutum 
mari  celandum  commisimus,  et  nunc  iacet  noster 
Lamachus  elemento  toto  sepultus. 

12  "Et  ille  quidem  dignum  virtutibus  suis  vitae  teiv 
minum  posuit :  enimvero  Alcimus  sollertibus  coeptis 
minus1  saevum  Fortunae  nutum  non  potuit  adducere. 
Qui  cum  dormientis  anus  perfracto  tuguriolo  conscen- 
disset  cubiculum  superius  iamque  protinus  oblisis 
faucibus  interstinguere  earn  debuisset,  prius  maluit 
rerum  singula  per  latiorem  fenestram  forinsecus  nobis 
scilicet  rapienda  dispergere.  Cumque  iam  cuncta 
rerum  naviter  emolitus  nee  toro  quidem  aniculae 
quiescentis  parcere  vellet,  eaque  lectulo  suo  devo- 
luta  vestem  stragulam  subductam  scilicet  iactare 
similiter  destinaret,  genibus  eius  profusa  sic  nequis- 
sima  ilia  deprecatur :  'Quid,  oro,  fill,  paupertinas 
pannosasque  resculas  miserrimae  anus  donas  vicinis 

i  MSS  eum.     Minut  is  Bluemner's  suggestion. 


of  faintness  (and  on  the  other  side  it  was  not  for  his 
profit  to  linger  behind)  he  spoke  unto  us  as  a  man 
of  singular  courage  and  virtue,  desiring  us  by  much 
entreaty  and  prayer,  and  by  the  puissance  of  the  god 
Mars  and  the  faith  of  our  confederacy,  to  deliver  our 
brave  comrade  from  torment  and  miserable  captivity  : 
and  further  he  asked  how  was  it  possible  that  so 
courageous  a  captain  could  live  without  his  hand, 
wherewith  alone  he  could  rob  and  slay  so  many 
people,  but  he  would  rather  think  himself  sufficiently 
happy  if  he  might  be  slain  by  the  hand  of  a  friend. 
But  when  he  saw  that  we  all  refused  to  commit  any 
such  wicked  deed  he  drew  out  his  sword  with  his 
other  hand,  and  after  that  he  had  often  kissed  it,  he 
thrust  it  with  a  strong  blow  clean  through  his  body. 
Then  we  honoured  the  corpse  of  so  puissant  a  man, 
and  wrapped  it  in  linen  clothes  and  threw  it  into  the 
sea  to  hide  it :  so  lieth  our  master  Latnachus  buried 
and  hid  in  the  grave  of  water. 

"  Now  he  ended  his  life  worthily  of  his  courage,  as 
I  have  declared  ;  but  Alcimus,  though  he  were  a  man 
of  great  enterprise,  yet  could  he  not  void  himself  from 
evil  fortune  :  for  on  a  day  when  he  had  entered  into 
an  old  woman's  hut  that  slept,  to  rob  her,  he  went  up 
into  the  higher  chamber,  where  he  should  first  have 
strangled  her,  but  he  had  more  regard  to  throw  down 
everything  out  of  the  window  to  us  that  stood  under  : 
and  when  he  had  cleverly  despoiled  all,  he  would 
leave  nothing  behind,  but  went  to  the  old  woman's 
bed  where  she  lay  asleep  and  threw  her  from  it,  and 
would  have  taken  off  the  coverlet  to  have  thrown 
down  likewise,  but  the  old  hag  awaked  and  fell  at  his 
knees,  and  desired  him  in  this  manner  :  '  O  sir,  I  pray 
you,  cast  not  away  such  torn  and  ragged  clouts  into 
my  neighbours'  houses,  whither  this  window  looks ; 

L  101 

divitibus,  quorum  haec  fenestra  domum  prospicit?' 
Quo  sermone  callido   deceptus  astu,  et    vera   quae 
dicta  sunt  credens  Alcimus,  verens  scilicet  ne  et  ea, 
quae  prius  miserat  quaeque  postea  missurus  foret,  non 
sociis  suis  sed  in  alienos  Lares  iam  certus   erroris 
abiceret,  suspendit  se  fenestra  sagaciter  perspecturus 
omnia,   praesertim  domus  attiguae,  ut  dixerat  ilia, 
fortunas  arbitraturus.     Quod    eum    strenue   quidem 
sed   satis   improvide    conantem  senile   illud  facinus 
quamquam  invalido,  repentino  tamen   et   inopinato 
pulsu,  nutantem  ac  pendulum  et  in  prospectu  alio- 
quin  attonitum  praeceps  inegit ;  qui  praeter  altitu- 
dinem   nimiam   super   quendam    etiam   vastissimum 
lapidem  propter  iacentem  reddens,  perfracta  diffis- 
saque  crate  costarum  rivos  sanguinis  vomens  imitus, 
narratisque  nobis  quae  gesta  sunt,  non  diu  cruciatus 
vitam  evasit :  quern  prioris  exemplo  sepulturae  tra- 
ditum  bonum  secutorem  Lamacho  dedimus. 
13      "Tune  orbitatis  duplici  plaga  petiti,  iamque  The- 
banis  conatibus  abnuentes,  Plataeas  proximam  con- 
scendimus    civitatem.     Ibi   famam   celebrem    super 
quodam  Demochare  munus  edituro  gladiatorium  de- 
prehendimus :  nam  vir  et  genere  primarius  et  opibus 
plurimus   et   liberalitate  praecipuus  digno  fortunae 
suae  splendore  publicas  voluptates  instruebat.     Quis 
tantus  ingenii,  quis  facundiae,  qui  singulas  species 
apparatus  multiiugi  verbis  idoneis  posset  explicare  ? 
Gladiatores  isti  famosae  manus,  venatores  illi  pro- 
batae  pernicitatis,  alibi  noxii  perdita  securitate  suis 

for  they  are  rich  enough  and  need  no  such  things.* 
Then  Alcimus  (thinking  her  words  to  be  true)  was 
brought  in  belief  that  such  things  as  he  had  thrown 
out  already,  and  such  things  as  he  should  throw  out 
after,  were  not  fallen  down  to  his  fellows,  but  into 
other  men's  houses ;  wherefore  he  went  to  the  window 
to  see,  and  especially  to  behold  the  places  round 
about,  as  she  had  told  him,  thrusting  his  body  out  of 
the  window  ;  but  while  he  strove  to  do  this,  strongly 
indeed  but  somewhat  rashly,  the  old  trot  marked  him 
well,  and  came  behind  him  softly,  and  although  she 
had  but  small  strength,  yet  with  a  sudden  force  she 
took  him  by  the  heels  and  thrust  him  out  headlong 
while  his  body  was  balancing  and  unsure  ;  and  beside 
that  the  height  was  very  great,  he  fell  upon  a  mar- 
vellous great  stone  that  lay  near  and  burst  his  ribs, 
whereby  he  vomited  and  spewed  flakes  of  blood,  and 
when  he  had  told  us  all,  he  suffered  not  long  torment, 
but  pi'esently  died.  Then  we  gave  unto  him  the  same 
burial  and  sent  him  a  worthy  comrade  to  Lamachus, 
as  we  had  done  before. 

"  When  we  had  thus  lost  two  of  our  companions, 
we  liked  not  Thebes,  but  marched  towards  the  next 
city  called  Plataea,  where  we  found  great  fame  con- 
cerning a  man  named  Demochares  that  purposed  to 
set  forth  a  great  game,  where  should  be  a  trial  of  all 
kinds  of  weapons  :  he  was  come  of  a  good  house, 
marvellous  rich,  liberal,  and  well  deserved  that  which 
he  had,  and  had  prepared  many  shews  and  pleasures 
for  the  common  people  :  in  so  much  that  there  is  no 
man  can  either  by  wit  or  eloquence  shew  in  fit  words 
all  the  manifold  shapes  of  his  preparations,  for  first 
he  had  provided  gladiators  of  a  famous  band,  then  all 
manner  of  hunters  most  fleet  of  foot,  then  guilty 
men  without  hope  of  reprieve  who  were  judged  for 



epulis  bestiarum  saginas  instruentes ;  confixilis  ma* 
chinae  sublicae,  turres  tabularum  nexibus  ad  instar 
circumforaneae  domus,  floridae  picturae,  decora  fu- 
turae  venationis  receptacula.  Qui  praeterea  numerus, 
quae  facies  ferarum !  Nam  praecipuo  studio  forin- 
secus  etiam  advexerat  generosa  ilia  damnatorum  capi- 
tum  funera.  Sed  praeter  ceteram  speciosi  muneris 
supellectilem  totis  utcumque  patrimonii  viribus  im- 
manis  ursae  comparabat  numerum  copiosum  :  nam 
praeter  domesticis  venationibus  captas,  praeter  largis 
emptionibus  partas,  amicorum  etiam  donationibus 
variis  certatim  oblatas  tutela  sumptuosa  sollicite 
14  nutriebat.  Nee  ille  tarn  clarus  tamque  splendidus 
publicae  voluptatis  apparatus  invidiae  noxios  effugit 
oculos :  nam  diutina  captivitate  fatigatae  simul  et 
aestiva  flagrantia  maceratae,  pigra  etiam  sessione 
languidae,  repentina  correptae  pestilentia  paene  ad 
nullum  redivere  numerum.  Passim  per  plateas  pluri- 
mas  cerneres  iacere  semivivorum  corporum  ferina 
naufragia :  tune  vulgus  ignobile,  quos  inculta  pau- 
peries  sine  delectu  ciborum  tenuato  ventri  cogit 
sordentia  supplementa  et  dapes  gratuitas  conquirere, 
passim  iacentes  epulas  accurrunt. 

"  Tune  e  re  nata  subtile  consilium  ego  et  iste  Babu- 

lus  tale  commmiscimur :  unam,  quae  cetens  sarcina 

corporis  praevalebat,  quasi  cibo  parandam  portamus 
ad  nostrum  receptaculum  eiusque  probe  nudatum 
carnibus  corium,  servatis  sollerter  totis  unguibus, 
ipso  etiam  bestiae  capita  adusque  connnium  cervicis 


their  punishment  to  be  food  for  wild  beasts.  He  had 
ordained  a  machine  made  of  beams  fixed  together, 
great  towers  and  platforms  like  a  house  to  move 
hither  and  thither,  very  well  painted,  to  be  places  to 
contain  all  the  quarry  :  he  had  ready  a  great  number 
of  wild  beasts  and  all  sorts  of  them,  especially  he 
had  brought  from  abroad  those  noble  creatures  that 
were  soon  to  be  the  death  of  so  many  condemned 
persons.  But  amongst  so  great  preparations  of  noble 
price,  he  bestowed  the  most  part  of  his  patrimony  in 
buying  of  a  vast  multitude  of  great  bears,  which 
either  by  chasing  he  had  caught  himself,  or  which  he 
dearly  bought  or  which  were  given  him  by  divers  of 
his  friends,  who  strove  one  with  another  in  making 
him  such  gifts  :  and  all  these  he  kept  and  nourished 
to  his  very  great  cost.  Howbeit  for  all  his  care  of 
the  public  pleasure,  he  could  not  be  free  from  the 
malicious  eyes  of  envy  :  for  some  of  them  were  well 
nigh  dead,  with  too  long  tying  up  ;  some  meagre 
with  the  broiling  heat  of  the  sun;  some  languished 
with  long  lying,  but  all  (having  sundry  diseases)  were 
so  afflicted  that  they  died  one  after  another,  and  there 
were  well  nigh  none  left,  in  such  sort  that  you 
might  see  their  wrecks  piteously  lying  in  the  streets 
and  all  but  dead :  and  then  the  common  people, 
having  no  other  meat  to  feed  on,  and  forced  by  their 
rude  poverty  to  find  any  new  meat  and  cheap  feasts, 
would  come  forth  and  fill  their  bellies  with  the  flesh 
of  the  bears. 

"  Then  by  and  by  Babulus  and  I  devised  a  pretty 
sport  to  suit  this  case ;  we  drew  to  our  lodging  one 
of  the  bears  that  was  greater  of  bulk  than  all  the  rest, 
as  though  we  would  prepare  to  eat  thereof,  where 
we  flayed  off  his  skin  and  kept  his  claws  whole,  but 
we  meddled  not  with  the  head,  but  cut  it  off  by  the 



solido  relicto,  tergus  omne  rasura  studiosa  tenuamus 
et  minuto  cinere  perspersum  soli  siccandum  tradimus. 
Ac  dum  caelestis  vaporis  flammis  examurgatur,  nos 
interdum  pulpis  eius  valenter  saginantes,  sic  instanti 
militiae  disponimus  sacramentum,  ut  unus  e  numero 
nostro,  non  qui  corporis  adeo  sed  animi  robore  ceteris 
antistaret,  atque  is  in  primis  voluntarius,  pelle  ilia 
contectus  ursae  subiret  effigiem,  domumque  Demo- 
charis  illatus  per  opportuna  noctis  silentia  nobis 

J  5  ianuae  faciles  praestaret  aditus.  Nee  paucos  fortissimi 
collegii  sellers  species  ad  munus  obeundum  arrexerat : 
quorum  prae  ceteris  Thrasyleon  factionis  optione 
delectus  ancipitis  machinae  subivit  aleam,  iamque 
habili  corio  et  mollitie  tractabili  vultu  sereno  sese 
recondit.  Tune  tenui  sarcimine  summas  oras  eius 
adaequamus,  et  iuncturae  rimam,  licet  gracilem,  saetae 
circumfluentis  densitate  saepimus ;  ad  ipsum  con- 
finium  gulae,  qua  cervix  bestiae  fuerat  exsecta, 
Thrasyleoiiis  caput  subire  cogimus,  parvisque  re- 
spiratui  circa  nares  et  oculos  datis  foraminibus,  for- 
tissimum  socium  nostrum,  prorsus  bestiam  factum, 
inmittimus  caveae  modico  praestinatae  pretio,  quam 
constanti  vigore  festinus  irrepsit  ipse. 

"Ad  hunc    modum   prioribus    inchoatis,    sic    ad 

16  reliqua  fallaciae  pergimus  :  sciscitati  nomen  cuiusdam 
Nicanoris  qui  genere  Thracio  proditus  ius  amicitiae 
stimmum  cum  illo  Demochare  colebat,  litteras 
affingimus,  ut  venationis  suae  primitias  bonus  amicus 


neck,  and  so  let  it  hang  to  the  skin.  Then  we  razed 
oft'  the  flesh  from  the  back,  and  cast  dust  thereon, 
and  set  it  in  the  sun  to  dry  :  and  while  it  was  drying 
by  the  heat  of  the  heavenly  fire,  we  made  merry 
with  the  flesh,  and  then  we  devised  with  ourselves 
with  an  oath  that  one  of  us,  being  more  valiant  than 
the  rest,  not  so  much  in  body  as  in  courage  (so  that 
he  would  straightway  consent  thereto)  should  put  on 
the  skin,  and  feigning  that  he  were  a  bear,  should  be 
led  to  Demochares'  house  in  the  night,  by  which 
means  we  thought  to  be  received  and  easily  let  in. 
Many  of  our  brave  brotherhood  were  desirous  to  play 
the  bear  in  this  subtle  sleight,  but  especially  one 
Thrasyleon  of  a  courageous  mind  was  chosen  by  all 
our  band  to  take  the  risk  of  this  enterprise.  Then 
we  put  him,  very  calm  in  mind  and  face,  into  the 
bear's  skin,  which  was  soft  and  fitted  him  finely  in 
every  point ;  we  buckled  fast  the  edges  thereof  with 
fine  stitching,  and  covered  the  same,  though  small, 
with  the  thick  hair  growing  about  it  that  it  might  not 
be  seen  :  we  thrust  his  head  into  the  opening  ot 
the  bear's  throat  where  his  neck  had  been  cut  out, 
and  after  this  we  made  little  holes  through  his 
nostrils  and  eyes  for  Thrasyleon  to  see  out  and  take 
wind  at,  in  such  sort  that  he  seemed  a  very  lively 
and  natural  beast :  when  this  was  done,  we  brought 
him  into  a  cage  which  we  hired  with  a  little  money 
for  the  purpose,  and  he  crept  nimbly  in  after  like  a 
bear  with  a  good  courage. 

11  Thus  we  began  our  subtlety,  and  then  we 
agined  thus :  we  feigned  letters  as  though  they 
came  from  one  Nicanor  which  dwelt  in  the  country 
of  Thrace,  which  was  of  great  acquaintance  with 
this  Demochares,  wherein  we  wrote  that  he  had 
sent  him,  being  his  friend,  the  first-fruits  of  his 



videretur  ornando  muneri  dedicasse.  lamque  pro- 
vecta  vespera,  abusi  praesidio  tenebi-arum,  Thrasy- 
leonis  caveam  Demochari  cum  litteris  lllis  adulterinis 
offerimus,  qui  miratus  bestiae  magnitudinem  suique 
contubernalis  opportuna  liberalitate  laetatus  iubet 
nobis  protinus  gaudii  sui  gerulis  decem  aureos,  ut 
ipse  habebat,  e  suis  loculis  adnumerari.  Tune  ut 
novitas  consuevit  ad  repentinas  visiones  aniraos 
hominum  pellere,  multi  numero  mirabundi  bestiam 
confluebant,  quorum  satis  callenter  curiosos  aspeetus 
Thrasyleon  noster  impetu  minaci  frequenter  in- 
hibebat ;  consonaque  civium  voce  satis  felix  ac 
beatus  Demochares  ille  saepe  celebratus,  quod 
post  tantam  cladem  ferarum  novo  proventu  quo- 
quo  modo  fortunae  resisteret,  iubet  novalibus 
suis  confestim  bestiam  summa  cum  diligentia  de- 
1 7  portari ;  sed  suscipiens  ego  '  Caveas/  inquam 
'  Domine,  flagrantia  solis  et  itineris  spatio  fatigatam 
coetui  multarum  et,  ut  audio,  non  recte  valentium 
committere  ferarum.  Quin  potius  domus  tuae  patu- 
lum  ac  perflabilem  locum,  immo  et  lacu  aliquo  con- 
terminum  refrigerantemque  prospicis  ?  An  ignoras 
hoc  genus  bestiae  lucos  consitos  et  specus  roridos  et 
fontes  amoenos  semper  incubare  ? '  Talibus  mon- 
itis  Demochares  perterritus  numerumque  perditorum 
secum  recensens,  non  difficulter  assensus,  ut  ex  ar- 
bitrio  nostro  caveam  locaremus  facile  permisit.  '  Sed 
et  nos '  inquam  *  Ipsi  parati  sumus  hie  ibidem  pro 



coursing  and  hunting.  When  night  was  come,  we 
took  cover  of  the  darkness,  and  brought  Thrasyleon's 
cage  and  our  forged  letters,  and  presented  them  to 
Demochares.  When  Demochares  wonderingly  beheld 
this  mighty  bear,  and  saw  the  timely  liberality  of 
Nicanor  his  friend,  he  was  glad,  and  commanded  his 
servant  to  deliver  unto  us  that  brought  him  this  joy 
ten  gold  crowns,  as  he  had  great  store  in  his  coflers  : 
then  (as  the  novelty  of  a  thing  doth  accustom  to  stir 
men's  minds  to  behold  the  same)  many  persons  came 
on  every  side  to  see  this  bear,  but  Thrasyleon  (lest 
they  should  by  curious  viewing  and  prying  perceive 
the  truth)  ran  often  upon  them  to  put  them  in  fear, 
so  that  they  durst  not  come  nigh.  Then  the  people 
said  with  one  voice  :  '  Verily  Demochares  is  right 
happy,  in  that,  after  the  death  of  so  many  beasts,  he 
hath  gotten,  in  spite  of  fortune,  so  goodly  a  bear  to 
supply  him  afresh.'  He  commanded  that  with  great 
care  his  servants  should  put  him  into  the  park  close 
by,  but  I  immediately  spoke  unto  him  and  said: 
'  Sir,  I  pray  you,  take  heed  how  you  put  a  beast 
tired  with  the  heat  of  the  sun  and  with  long  travel 
amongst  others  which  (as  I  hear  say)  have  divers 
maladies  and  diseases  ;  let  him  rather  lie  in  some 
open  place  of  your  house,  where  the  breeze  blows 
through,  yea  nigh  to  some  water,  where  he 
may  take  air  and  ease  himself,  for  do  not  you 
know  that  such  kind  of  beasts  do  greatly  delight 
to  couch  under  shadow  of  trees  and  dewy  caves,  nigh 
unto  pleasant  wells  and  waters?'  .  Hereby  Demo- 
chares, admonished  and  remembering  how  many  he 
had  before  that  perished,  was  contented  that  we 
should  put  the  bear's  cage  where  we  would.  More- 
over we  said  unto  him  :  '  We  ourselves  are  determined 
to  lie  all  night  nigh  unto  the  bear,  to  look  unto  him, 



cavea  ista  excubare  noctes,  ut  aestus  et  vexationis 
incommode  bestiae  fatigatae  et  cibum  tempestivum 
et  potum  solitum  accuratius  offeramus.'  '  Nihil  in- 
digemus  labore  isto  vestro  ; '  respondit  ille  '  lam  paene 
tola  familia  per  diutinam  consuetudinem  nutriendis 
ursis  exercitata  est.' 

18      «  Post  haec  valefacto  discessimus  et  portam  civitatis 
egressi  monumentum  quoddam  conspicamur  procul  a 
via  remote  et  abdito  loco  positum.      Ibi  capulos  carie 
et  vetustate  semitectos,  quis  inhabitabant  pulverei  et 
iam   cinerosi    mortui,    passim    ad    futurae    praedae 
receptacula  reseramus  et,  ex  disciplina  sectae  servato 
noctis  inlunio  tempore,  quo  somnus  obvius  impetti 
primo  corda  mortalium  validius  invadit  ac  premit, 
cohortem   nostram  gladiis  armatam  ante  ipsas  fores 
Democharis  velut  expilationis  vadimonium  sistimus. 
Nee  setius  Thrasyleon,  examussim  capto  noctis  latro- 
cinali  momento,  prorepit  cavea  statimque  custodes, 
qui  propter  sopiti  quiescebant  omnes  ad  unum,  mox 
etiam  ianitorem  ipsum  gladio  conficit,  clavique  sub- 
tracta  fores  ianuae  repandit  nobisque  prompte  convo- 
lantibus  et  domus  alveo  receptis  demonstrat  horreum, 
ubi   vespera   sagaciter  argentum    copiosum   recondi 
viderat.     Quo   protinus   perfracto    confertae    manus 
violentia,   iubeo    singulos    commilitonum    asportare 
quantum  quisque  poterat  auri  vel  argenti,  et  in  illis 
aedibus  fidelissimorum  mortuorum  occultare  propere 
rursumque  concito  gradu  recurrentes  sarcinas  iterare  : 
quod  enim  ex  usu   foret  omnium,  me   sohun  resis- 


which  is  tired  with  the  heat  and  his  long  journey, 
and  to  give  him  meat  and  drink  at  his  due  hour.' 
Then  he  answered  :  (  Verily,  masters,  you  need  not 
to  put  yourselves  to  such  pains :  for  I  have  men, 
yea,  almost  all  my  family  of  servants,  that  serve  for 
nothing  but  for  this  purpose  of  tending  bears.' 

"  Then  we  took  leave  of  him  and  departed,  and 
when  we  were  come  without  the  gates  of  the  town 
we  perceived  before  us  a  great  sepulchre  standing 
out  of  the  highway,  in  a  privy  and  secret  place.  And 
thither  we  went  and  opened  there  certain  coffins,  half 
rotted  with  age,  wherein  we  found  the  corruption  of 
man,  and  the  ashes  and  dust  of  his  long-buried  body, 
which  should  serve  to  hold  the  prey  we  were  very 
soon  to  get :  and  then,  according  to  the  custom  of 
our  band,  having  a  respect  to  the  dark  and  moonless 
time  of  the  night  when  we  thought  that  every  man 
was  sunk  in  his  first  and  strongest  sleep,  we  went 
with  our  weapons  and  besieged  the  doors  of  Demo- 
chares  round  about,  in  earnest  that  we  were  soon  to 
plunder  the  same.  Then  Thrasyleon  was  ready  at 
hand,  seizing  upon  that  time  of  night  which  is  for 
robbers  most  fit,  and  crept  out  of  the  cage  and  went 
to  kill  all  such  of  his  guards  as  he  found  asleep  ;  but 
when  he  came  to  the  porter  he  slew  him  also  and 
took  the  key  and  opened  the  gates  and  let  us  all  in  : 
and  he  shewed  us  now  in  the  midst  of  the  house  a 
large  counter,  wherein  looking  sharply  he  saw  put 
the  night  before  a  great  abundance  of  treasure : 
which  when  by  violence  of  us  all  we  had  broken 
open,  I  bade  every  one  of  my  fellows  take  as  much 
gold  and  silver  as  they  could  quickly  bear  away,  and 
carry  it  to  the  sepulchre,  and  there  quickly  hide  it 
in  the  house  of  those  dead  who  were  to  us  most 
faithful  allies,  and  then  come  soon  back  to  take  another 



tentem  pro  domus  limine  cuncta  rerum  exploraturum 
sollicite  dum  redirent ;  nam  et  fades  ursae  mediis 
aedibus  discurrentis  ad  proterrendos,  si  qui  de  familia 
forte  evigilassent,  videbatur  opportuna.  Quis  enim, 
quamuis  fortis  et  intrepidus,  immani  forma  tantae 
bestiae  noctu  praesertim  visitata,,  non  se  ad  fugam 
statim  concitaret,  non  obdito  cellae  pessulo  pavens  et 
trepidus  sese  cohiberet  ? 

19  "'His   omnibus    salubri    consilio    recte    dispositis 
occurrit   scaevus    eventus :    namque    dum    reduces 
socios  nostros  suspensus  opperior,  quidam  servulus, 
strepitu  scilicet  divinitus  inquietus,  proserpit  leniter 
visaque  bestia,  quae  libere  discurrens  totis  aedibus 
commeabat,  premens  obnixum  silentium    vestigium 
suum  replicat  et  utcumque  cunctis  in  domo  visa  pro- 
nuntiat.     Nee  mora,  cum  numerosae    familiae   fre- 
quentia    domus    tota    completur  :    taedis,    lucernis, 
cereis,  sebaciis,  et   ceteris  nocturni  luminis   instru- 
mentis  clarescunt  tenebrae  ;  nee  inermis  quisquam 
de  tanta  copia  processit,  sed  singuli  fustibus,  lanceis, 
destrictis    denique    gladiis   armati   muniunt    aditus. 
Nee   secus   canes   etiam  venaticos,    auritos   illos   et 
horricomes  ad  comprimendam  bestiam  cohortantur. 

20  "  Tune  ego,  sensim  gliscente  adhuc  illo  tumultu, 
retrogradi  fuga  domo  facesso  sed  plane  Thrasyleo- 
nem  mire  canibus  repugnantem,  latens  pone  ianuam 
ipse,  prospicio:    quamquam   enirn  vitae  metas  ulti- 
mas obiret,  non  tamen  sui  nostrique  vel   pristinae 
virtutis  oblitus  iam  faucibus  ipsis  hiantis  Cerberi  re- 
luctabat :  scaenam  denique  quam  sponte  sumpserat 
cum  anima  retinens,  nunc  fugiens,  nunc  resistens, 



burden ;  but  I,  for  our  common  weal,  would  stand 
alone  at  the  gate  watching  diligently  when  they 
would  return,  and  the  bear  running  about  the  house 
would  make  such  of  the  family  afraid  as  fortuned  to 
wake  and  come  out :  for  who  is  he  that  is  so  puissant 
and  courageous,  that  at  the  sight  of  so  great  a  monster 
would  not  quail  and  flee  away  and  keep  his  chamber 
well  barred,  especially  in  the  night  ? 

"  Now  when  we  had  brought  this  matter  to  so 
good  a  point,  there  chanced  a  pitiful  case ;  for  as  I 
looked  for  my  companions  that  should  come  from 
the  sepulchre,  behold  there  was  .  a  boy  of  the 
house  that  fortuned  to  be  awaked  by  the  noise,  as 
fate  would  have  it,  and  look  out  of  a  window  and 
espy  the  bear  running  freely  about  the  house,  and 
he  went  back  on  his  steps  a-tiptoe  and  very  secretly, 
and  told  all  the  servants,  and  at  once  the  house  was 
filled  with  the  whole  train  of  them.  Incontinently 
they  came  forth  with  torches,  lanterns,  candles  and 
tapers,  and  other  lights,  that  they  might  see  all  the 
yard  over ;  they  came  not  unarmed,  but  with  clubs, 
spears,  and  naked  swords,  to  guard  the  entrances,  and 
they  set  on  greyhounds  and  mastiffs,  even  those  with 
great  ears  and  shaggy  hair,  to  subdue  the  poor  beast. 
Then  I,  during  this  broil,  thought  to  run  away,  but 
because  I  would  see  Thrasyleon  fighting  wonderfully 
with  the  dogs,  1  lay  behind  the  gate  to  behold  him. 
And  although  I  might  perceive  that  he  was  at  the 
very  term  or  limit  of  fife,  yet  remembered  he  his 
own  faithfulness  and  ours,  and  valiantly  resisted  the 
gaping  and  ravenous  mouths  of  the  hound  of  Hell : 
for  he  took  well  to  play  the  part  which  he  so  will- 
ingly had  taken  in  hand  himself,  and  with  much 
ado,  so  long  as  the  breath  was  in  him,  now  flying 
and  now  pursuing,  with  many  twistings  and  turnings 



Variis  corporis  sui  schemis  ac  motibus  tandem  domo 
prolapsus  est.     Nee  tamen,  quamvis  publica  potitus 
libertate,  salutem  fuga  quaerere  potuit,  quippe  cuncti 
canes  de  proximo  angiportu  satis  feri  satisque  copiosi 
venaticis  illis,  qui  commodum  domo  similiter  inse- 
quentes    processerant,    se    obmiscent     agminatim. 
Miserum   funestumque    spectamen   aspexi,  Thrasy- 
leonem  nostrum  catervis  canum  saevientium  cine  turn 
atque  obsessum  multisque  numero  morsibus  lania- 
tum.     Denique  tanti  doloris  impatiens  populi  circum- 
fluentis  turbelis  immisceor,  et  in  quo  solo  poteram 
celatum    auxilium    bono   ferre    commilitoni,  sic   in- 
daginis  principes  dehortabar  :    'O  grande  '  inquam 
'  Et  extremum  flagitium,  magnam  et  vere  pretiosam 
21'perdimus  bestiam.'    Nee  tamen  nostri  sermonis  artes 
infelicissimo  profuerunt  iuveni,  quippe  quidam  pro- 
currens  e  domo  procerus  et  validus  incunctanter  lan- 
ceam  mediis  iniecit  ursae  praecordiis  nee  secus  alius, 
et  ecce  plurimi  iam  timore  discusso  certatim  gladios 
etiam  de  proximo  congerunt :  enimvero  Thrasyleon, 
egregium  decus   nostrae  factionis,  tandem   immor- 
talitate  digno  illo    spiritu   expugnato,   magis   quam 
patientia    neque    clamore    ac    ne    ululatu    quid  em 
fidem     sacramenti     prodidit,     sed      iam      morsibus 
laceratus  ferroque  laniatus,  obnixo  mugitu  et  ferino 
fremitu  praesentem  casum  generoso  vigore  tolerans 
gloriam  sibi  jeservavit,  vitam  fato  reddidit.     Tanto 
tamen  terrore  tantaque  formidine  coetum  ilium  tur- 
baverat,  ut  usque  diluculum,  immo  et  in  multum  diem 
nemo  quisquam  fuerit  ausus  quamvis  iacentem  bes- 
tiam  vel  digito    contingere,    nisi   tandem  pigre  ac 
timide  quidam  lanius  paulo  fidentior,  utero  bestiae 


of  his  body,  tumbled  at  length  out  of  the  house ; 
but  when  he  was  come  to  liberty  abroad,  yet  could 
he  not  save  himself  by  flight,  for  all  the  dogs  of  the 
street  (which  were  fierce  and  many)  joined  them- 
selves to  the  greyhounds  and  mastiffs  that  had  just 
come  out  of  the  house,  to  chase  him  like  a  great 
host :  alas,  what  a  pitiful  sight  it  was  when  our  poor 
Thrasyleon  was  thus  environed  and  compassed  with 
so  many  furious  dogs  that  tore  and  rent  him  miser- 
ably !  Then  I,  impatient  of  so  great  his  misery,  ran 
in  amongst  the  press  of  the  people,  and  aiding  my 
comrade  secretly  with  my  words  (for  no  more  could 
I  do)  exhorted  all  the  leaders  of  this  chase  in  this 
manner :  '  O  great  extreme  mischance,  what  a  pre- 
cious and  excellent  beast  do  we  lose  !  '  but  my 
words  did  nothing  prevail  to  help  the  poor  wretch. 
For  there  came  running  out  a  tall  man  with  a  spear 
in  his  hand,  that  thrust  him  clean  through,  and 
afterwards  many  that  stood  by,  released  of  their 
fear,  drew  out  their  swords,  and  so  they  killed  him. 
But  verily  our  brave  captain  Thrasyleon,  the  great 
honour  of  our  band,  when  his  life,  that  was 
worthy  never  to  die,  was  utterly  overcome,  but  not 
his  fortitude,  would  not  bewray  the  league  between 
us,  either  by  crying,  howling,  or  any  other  means, 
but  (being  torn  with  dogs,  and  wounded  with 
weapons)  did  still  send  forth  a  bellowing  cry  more 
lake  that  of  a  beast  than  of  a  man :  and  taking  his 
present  fortune  in  good  part,  with  courage  and  glory 
enough  did  finish  his  life  with  such  a  terror  unto 
the  assembly,  that  no  person  was  so  hardy  (until  it 
was  morn,  nay,  until  it  was  high  day)  as  to  touch 
him,  though  he  were  a  beast  stark  dead :  but  at  last 
there  came  a  butcher  more  valiant  than  the  rest, 
who  (opening  the  paunch  of  the  beast)  slit  off  the 



*esecto,  ursae  magnificum  despoliavit  latronem.     Sic 
etiam  Thrasyleon  nobis  perivit  sed  a  gloria  non  peri- 
vit.    Confestim  itaque  constrictis  sarcinis  illis,  quas 
nobis   servaverant  fideles  mortui,  Plataeae  terminos 
concito  gradu  deserentes,  istud  apud  nostros  animos 
identidem  reputabamus,  merito  nullam  fidem  in  vita 
nostra  repperiri,  quod  ad  manes  iam  et  mortuos  odio 
perfidiae   nostrae    demigrarit.      Sic   onere   vecturae 
simul  et  asperitate l  viae  toti  fatigati,  tribus  comitum 
desideratis,  istas  quas  videtis  praedas  adveximus." 
2  2      Post  istum  sermonis  terminum  poculis  aureis  memo- 
riae defunctorum  commilitonum  vino  mero   libant, 
dehinc  canticis  quibusdam  Marti  deo  blanditi  paulu- 
lum  conquiescunt.     Enim  nobis  anus  ilia  recens  hor- 
deum  affatim  et  sine   ulla  mensura  largita  est,  ut 
equus  quidem   meus    tanta  copia  et    quidem    solus 
potitus  saliares  se  cenasse  cenas  2  crederet  :  ego  vero, 
qui  numquam  alias  hordeum  cibatus  ni  minutatum 
et  diutina  coquitatione  iurulentum   semper  eserim,3 
rimatus    angulum  quo  panes  reliquiae  totius  multi- 
tudinis  congestae  fuerant,  fauces  diutina  fame  saucias 
et  araneantes  valenter  exerceo.     Et  ecce  nocte  pro- 
niota  latrones  expergiti  castra    commovent   instruc- 
tique    varie,    partim     gladiis    armati,    partim 4    in 
Lemures    reformat!,    concito    se    gradu    proripiunt. 
Nee  me  tam.en  instanter  ac  fortiter   manducantem 

'i  Vulcanius'  emendation  for  the  MSS'  aspefe. 

2  Luetjohann's  emendation,   slightly  changed  by  van  di 
Vliet.      The  best  MS  has  salies  secenas,  with  a  lacuna  of  abc 
five  letters  after  the  last  word. 

3  The  whole  of  this  passage  is  very  corrupt  m  the  M  B».     - 



skin  from  the  hardy  and  venturous  thief.  In  this 
manner  there  was  lost  to  us  also  our  captain  Thrasy- 
leon,  but  there  was  not  lost  to  him  his  fame  and 
honour.  When  all  this  was  done,  we  packed  up  our 
treasure  which  the  faithful  dead  in  the  sepulchre 
had  kept  for  us,  and  we  got  us  out  of  the  bounds  of 
Plataea,  thinking  always  with  ourselves  that  there 
was  no  fidelity  to  be  found  amongst  the  living ;  and 
no  wonder,  for  that  it  hath  passed  over  to  the  ghosts 
and  the  dead  in  hatred  of  our  deceitfulness.  And 
so,  being  wearied  with  the  weight  of  our  burdens, 
and  very  tired  with  our  rough  travel,  having  thus 
lost  three  of  our  soldiers,  we  are  come  home  with 
this  present  prey  that  you  see." 

Thus  when  they  had  spoken  and  poured  libation 
of  pure  wine  from  cups  of  gold  in  memory  of  their 
slain  companions,  they  sung  hymns  to  the  god  Mars 
to  pacify  him  withal,  and  laid  them  down  to  sleep. 
Then  the  old  woman  gave  us  fresh  barley  in  plenty 
without  measure,  in  so  much  that  my  horse,  the  only 
lord  of  all  that  abundance,  might  well  think  he  was 
at  some  priestly  banquet  that  day.  But  I,  that  was 
accustomed  to  eat  flour  finely  milled  and  long  cooked 
with  broth,  thought  that  but  a  sour  kind  of  meat ; 
wherefore  espying  a  corner  where  lay  the  loaves  of 
bread  left  by  all  the  band,  I  got  me  thither,  and 
used  upon  them  my  jaws  which  ached  with  long 
famine  and  seemed  to  be  full  of  cobwebs.  Now  when 
the  night  was  come  the  thieves  awaked  and  rose  up  : 
and  when  they  had  buckled  on  their  weapons  and 

text  as  printed  gives  the  sense  required,  by  supplying  qui 
and  ni. 

*  This  partim  is  not  in  the  MSS,  and  was  supplied  by 
Elmenhorst ;  but  an  m  after  arrnati  seems  to  show  that  it  was 
once  there  and  had  dropped  out. 

M  177 


vel    somnus   imminens  impedire   potuit ;   et   quam- 
quam    prius,    cum     essem    Lucius,    unico   vel     se- 
cundo     pane     contentus    mensa    decederem,    tune 
ventri   tarn   profundo   serviens   iam   ferme    tertium 
qualum    rumigabam.       Huic    me    operi    attonitum 
23  clara  lux  oppressit :  tandem  itaque  asinali  verecundia 
ductus,  aegerrime  tamen  digrediens  rivulo  proximo 
sitim   lenio.     Nee   mora,   cum   latrones  ultro   anxii 
atque     solliciti    remeant,    nullam     quidem    prorsus 
sarcinam  vel   omnino,  licet  vilem,  laciniam  ferentes 
sed    tantum     gladiis    totis,1    totis    manibus,    immo 
factionis  suae  cunctis  viribus   unicam   virginem  filo 
liberalem   et,   ut   matronatus    eius    indicabat,   sum- 
matem  regionis,  puellam   mehercules   et   asino  tali 
concupiscendam,    maerentem   et    crines    cum   veste 
sua  lacerantem  advehebant.     Earn  simul  intrantes  2 
speluncam  verbisque  quae  dolebat  minora  facientes 
sic  alloquuntur  :    "  Tu  quidem  salutis  et  pudicitiae 
secura  brevem  patientiam  nostro  compendio  tribue, 
quos  ad  istam  sectam  paupertatis  necessitas  adegit. 
Parentes    autem    tui    de     tanto    suarum    divitiarum 
cumulo,  quamquam  satis   cupidi,  tamen    sine   mora 
parabunt    scilicet    idoneam   sui   sanguinis   redemp- 

24  His  et  his  similibus  blateratis  nequicquam  dolor 
sedatur  puellae.  Quidni,  quae  inter  genua  sua 
deposito  capite  sine  modo  flebat  ?  At  illi  intro- 

1  The  first  totis  is  not  in  the  MSS.  It  was  Lofstedt'*  sugges- 
tion  to  supply  it  after  gladiis. 

2  Bursian's  correction  of  the  MSS'  intra. 


disguised  their  faces  with  vizors,  like  unto  spectres, 
they  departed,  and  yet  for  all  the  great  sleep  that 
came  upon  me,  I  could  in  no  wise  leave  eating,  and 
whereas,  when  I  was  a  man,  I  could  be  contented 
•with  one  or  two  loaves  at  the  most,  now  my  guts 
were  so  greedy  that  three  panniers  full  would  scarcely 
serve  me ;  and  while  I  laboured  at  this  business,  the 
morning  came,  and  being  moved  by  even  an  ass's 
shamefastness,  I  left  my  food  at  last  (though  well  I 
liked  it)  and  at  a  stream  hard  by  I  quenched  my 
thirst.  And  suddenly  after,  the  thieves  returned 
home  careful  and  heavy,  bringing  no  burdens  with 
them,  no  not  so  much  as  one  poor  cloke,  but  with 
all  their  swords  and  strength,  yea  even  with  the 
might  of  their  whole  band,  only  a  maiden  that 
seemed  by  her  habit  to  be  some  gentlewoman  born, 
and  the  daughter  of  some  noble  of  that  country, 
who  was  so  fair  and  beautiful,  that  though  I  were  an 
ass,  yet  I  swear  that  I  had  a  great  affection  to  her. 
The  virgin  lamented  and  tore  her  hair,  and  spoiled 
her  garments  for  the  great  sorrow  she  was  in,  but 
the  thieves  brought  her  within  the  cave,  and  essayed 
to  comfort  her  in  this  sort :  "  Weep  not,  fair  gentle- 
woman, we  pray  you,  for  be  you  assured  that  we  will 
do  no  outrage  or  violence  to  your  person,  but  take 
patience  awhile  for  our  profit ;  for  necessity  and 
poor  estate  hath  compelled  us  to  this  enterprise :  we 
warrant  you  that  your  parents  (although  they  be 
covetous)  from  their  great  store  will  be  contented 
to  give  us  money  enough  to  redeem  and  ransom 
you,  that  are  their  own  blood,  from  our  hands." 

With  such  flattering  words  they  endeavoured  to 
appease  the  gentlewoman  :  howbeit  she  would  in  no 
case  be  comforted,  but  put  her  head  between  her 
knees  and  cried  piteously.  Then  they  called  the  old 



vocatae  anui  praecipiunt  assidens  earn  blando  quan- 
tum posset  solaretur  alloquio,  seque  ad  sectae  sueta 
conferunt.      Nee  tamen  puella  quivit  ullis  aniculae 
sermonibus  ab    inceptis  fletibus   avocari,  sed  altius 
eiulans  sese  et  assiduis  singultibus  ilia  quatiens  mihi 
etiam  lacrimas    excussit,  ac    sic  "An   ego"    inquit 
"  Misera,  tali  domo,  tanta  familia,  tarn  caris  vernulis, 
tarn  sanctis  parentibus  desolata  et  infelicis  rapinae 
praeda  et  mancipium  effecta,  inque  isto  saxeo  carcere 
serviliter  clausa  et  omnibus  deliciis,  quis  innata  atque 
innutrita  sum,  privata,  sub  incerto  salutis  et  carnifi- 
cinae  laniena,  inter  tot  ac  tales  latrones  et  horrendum 
gladiatorum  populum,  vel  fletum  desinere  vel  omnino 
vivere  potero  ?  "    Lamentata  sic,  et  animi  dolore  et 
faucium  tundore  et  corporis  lassitudine  iam  fatigata, 
2">  marcentes  oculos  demisit  ad  soporem  ;  at  commodum 
conniverat  nee   diu,   cum   repente   lymphatico   ritu 
somno  recussa  est1  longeque  vehementius  afflictare 
sese   et   pectus    etiam    palmis   infestis    tundere    et 
faciem  illam  luculentam  verberare  incipit,  et  aniculae 
quamquam   instantissime   causas   novi   et   instaurati 
maeroris  requirenti  sic  assuspirans  altius  infit :  "  Em 
nunc  certe,,  nunc  maxime  funditus  perii,  nunc  spei 
salutiferae  renuntiavi :  laqueus  aut  gladius  aut  certe 
praecipitium   procul   dubio  capessendum  est."     Ad 
haec   anus   iratior   dicere  earn   saeviore    iam   vultu 
iubebat  quid  malum2  fleret  vel  quid  repente  post- 
liminio     pressae    quietis    lamentationes    licentiosas 

1  Something  seems  to  be  lost  in  the   MSS  after  recussa. 
Luetjohann's  est  is  the  simplest  insertion. 

2  It  is  quite  possibly  right  to  put  commas  before  and  after 
malum,   and    to    translate:     "Why  was   she  weeping,   the 
plaguey  thing?" 



woman  and  commanded  her  to  sit  by  the  maiden, 
and  pacify  her  dolour  as  much  as  she  might.  And 
they  departed  away  to  rob,  as  they  accustomed  to  do, 
but  the  virgin  would  not  assuage  her  griefs  nor 
mitigate  her  sorrow  by  any  entreaty  of  the  old 
woman,  but  howled  and  sobbed,  shaking  her  bosom 
with  her  sighs,  in  such  sort  that  she  made  me  (poor 
ass)  likewise  to  weep,  and  thus  she  said  :  ee  Alas  !  can 
I,  poor  wretch,  that  am  come  of  so  good  a  house, 
being  now  forsaken  of  all  my  dear  parents,  my  many 
friends  and  great  house  and  family,  made  a  rapine 
and  prey,  closed  servilely  in  this  stony  prison,  de- 
prived of  all  the  pleasures  wherein  I  have  been 
brought  up,  thrown  in  danger,  ready  to  be  rent  in 
pieces  amongst  so  many  sturdy  thieves  and  dreadful 
robbers,  can  I  (I  say)  cease  from  weeping  or  live  any 
longer  ?  "  Thus  she  cried  and  lamented,  and  after 
she  had  wearied  herself  with  sorrow  and  beating  of 
her  breast,  she  closed  the  windows  of  her  hollow  eyes 
to  sleep  :  but  scarce  had  she  slept,  but  she  rose  again, 
like  a  furious  and  mad  woman,  and  did  afflict  herself 
more  violently  than  before,  and  beat  her  breast  and 
comely  face  with  her  cruel  hands.  Then  the  old 
woman  enquired  the  cause  of  her  new  and  sudden 
lamentation,  to  whom  (sighing  in  pitiful  sort)  she 
answered  :  "  Alas !  now  I  am  utterly  undone,  now  I 
am  out  of  all  hope.  O,  give  me  a  knife  to  kill  me  or 
a  halter  to  hang  me,  or  a  precipice  that  I  may  throw 
me  down  therefrom"  :  whereat  the  old  woman  was 
lore  angry,  and  severely  commanded  her  to  tell  her 
cause  of  her  sorrow,  and  why  after  her  sleep  she 
should  renew  her  dolour  and  miserable  weeping. 



refricaret:  "Nimirum"  inquit  "  Tanto  compendio 
tuae  redemptionis  defraudare  iuvenes  meos  destinas  : 
quod  si  pergis  ulterius,  iam  faxo  lacrimis  istis,  quas 
parvi  pendere  latrones  consueruiit,  insuper  habitis 
viva  exurare." 

26      Tali  puella  sermone  deterrita,,  manuque  ems  ex- 
osculata,  "  Farce  "  inquit  "Mi  parens,  et  durissimo 
casui  meo,  pietatis  humanae  memor,  subsiste  paululum ; 
nee  enim,  ut  reor,  aevo  longiore  maturatae  tibi  in  ista 
sancta  canitie  miseratio  prorsus  exaruit.     Specta  deni- 
que  scaenam  meae  calamitatis  :  speciosus  adulescens 
inter  suos  principals,  quern  nlium  publicum  omnis 
sibi  civitas  cooptavit,,  meus  alioquin  consobrintis,  tan- 
tulo  triennio  maior  in  aetate,  qui  mecum  primis  ab 
annis  nutritus  et  adultus  individuo  contubernio  do- 
musculae,  immo  vero  cubiculi  torique  sanctae  caritatis 
affectione  mutuo  mini  pigneratus,  votisque  nuptiah- 
bus  pacto  iugali  pridem  destinatus,  consensu  paren- 
tum    tabulis  etiani  maritus  nuncupatus,  ad   nuptias 
officio  frequenti  cognatorum  et  affiniura  stipatus  tem- 
plis  et  aedibus  publicis  victimas  immolabat :  domus 
tota  lauris  obsita,  taedis  lucida  constrepebat  hyme- 
naeum.     Tune  me  gremio  suo  mater  infelix  tolerans 
mundo  nuptiali  decenter  ornabat,  mellitisque  saviis 
crebriter  ingestis  iam  spem  futuram  liberorum  votis 
anxiis  propagabat,  cum  irruptionis  subitae  gladiatorum 
impetus  ad   belli  faciem  saeviens,  nudis  et  infestis 
nuicronibus  coruscans  ;  non  caedi,  non  rapinae  manus 
affei-unt,  sed  denso  conglobatoque  cuneo  cubiculum 
nostrum  inuadunt  protinus :  nee  ullo  de  familiaribus 
nostris  repugnante  ac  ne  tantillum  quidem  resistente, 
miseram,    exanimem   saevo    pavore,    trepidam x    de 

l  Oudendorp's  suggestion  for  the  MSS'  trepido. 


"What,  think  you/'  quoth  she,  "To  deceive  our 
young  men  of  the  price  of  your  ransom  ?  No.  no  ; 
therefore  cease  your  crying,  for  the  thieves  do  little 
esteem  your  tears,  and  if  you  will  still  weep,  I  will 
surely  burn  you  alive." 

Hereat  the  maiden  was  greatly  afraid,  and  kissed 
her  hand  and  said  :  "  O  mother,  take  pity  upon  me 
and  my  wretched  fortune,  for  the  sake  of  human 
kindness,  for  I  think  there  be  mercy  ripe  and  frank 
in  your  venerable  hoar  head,  and  hear  the  sum  of  my 
calamity.  There  was  a  comely  young  man  of  the 
first  rank  in  the  city,  who  for  his  bounty  and  grace 
was  beloved  entirely  as  a  son  of  all  the  town,  my 
cousin-germain,  and  but  three  years  older  than  I  ; 
from  our  early  years  we  two  were  nourished  and 
brought  up  in  one  house,  and  lay  under  one  roof, 
aye,  in  one  chamber  and  bed,  and  at  length  by 
promise  of  marriage  and  by  consent  of  our  parents 
we  were  by  law  contracted  together ;  the  marriage 
day  was  come,  my  spouse  was  accompanied  with  his 
parents,  kinsfolk,  and  friends,  and  made  sacrifice  in 
the  temples  and  public  places ;  the  whole  house  was 
garnished  with  laurel,  and  torches  were  set  in  every 
place  as  they  chanted  in  honour  of  Hymenaeus,  and 
when  my  unhappy  mother  was  pampering  me  in  her 
lap  and  decking  me  like  a  bride,  kissing  me  sweetly 
and  praying  earnestly  for  the  hope  of  future  children, 
behold  there  came  in  suddenly  a  great  multitude  of 
thieves,  armed  like  men  of  war,  with  naked  swords  in 
their  hands,  who  went  not  about  to  do  any  slaughter, 
neither  to  take  anything  away,  but  brake  into  the 
chamber  where  I  was,  and  violently  took  me,  now 
half  dead  with  fear,  out  of  my  mother's  arms,  when 
none  of  the  family  would  fight  nor  resist  ever  so  little. 
In  this  sort  was  our  marriage  broken  and  disturbed, 



medio  matris  gremio  rapuere.     Sic  ad  instar  Athra- 
cidis  x  et  Protesilai  dispectae  disturbataeque  nuptiae. 

27  Sed  ecce  saevissimo  somnio  mihi  nunc  etiam  redinte- 
gratur,   immo   vero   cumulatur   infortunium   meum : 
nam  visa  sum  mihi  de  domo,  de  ihalamo,  de  cubiculo, 
de  toro  denique  ipso  violenter  extracta  per  solitudines 
avias  infortunatissimi  mariti  nomen  invocare,  eumque, 
ut  primum  meis  amplexibus  viduatus  est,  adhuc  un- 
guentis  madidum,  coronis  florid um  consequi  vestigio 
me  pedibus  fugientem  alienis  :  utque  clamore  percito 
formosae  raptum  uxoris  conquerens  populi  testatur 
auxilium,  quidam  de   latronibus   importunae  perse- 
cutionis  indignatione  permotus  saxo  grandi  pro  pedi- 
bus arrepto  misellum  iuvenem  maritum  meum  per- 
cussum  interemit :  talis  aspectus  atrocitate  perterrita 
somno  funesto  pavens  excussa  sum."     Tune  fletibus 
eius  assuspirans  anus  sic  incipit :  "  Bono  animo  esto, 
mi  herilis,  nee  vanis  somniorum  figmentis  terreare : 
nam   praeter  quod   diurnae    quietis   imagines  falsae 
perhibentur,  tune  etiam  nocturnae  visiones  contrarios 
eventus  nonnunquam  pronuntiant.     Denique  flere  et 
vapulare  et  nonnunquam  iugulari  lucrosum  prosper- 
umque  proventum  nuntiant,  contra  ridere  et  mellitis 
dulciolis  ventrem  saginare  vel   in  voluptatem  Vene- 
riam    convenire   tristitiae   animi,   languori    corporis 
damnisque  ceteris  anxiatum  iri  praedicant.     Sed  ego 
te  narrationibus  lepidis  anilibusque  fabulis  protinus 
avocabo  "  ;  et  incipit :     . 

28  "  Erant  in  quadam  civitate  rex  et  regina  :  hi  tres 
numero  filias  forma  conspicuas  habuere,  sed  maiores 
quidem    natu,    quamvis    gratissima   specie,    idonee 
tamen  celebrari  posse  laudibus  humanis  credebantur, 

1  So  Beroaldus  for  the  MSS'  Attidia. 



like  the  marriage  of  Hippodamia  and  Protesilaus: 
but  behold,  good  mother,  now  my  unhappy  fortune  is 
renewed  and  increased  :  for  I  dreamed  in  my  sleep 
that  I  was  pulled  out  of  our  house,  out  of  our  chamber, 
and  out  of  my  bed,  and  that  I  roamed  about  in  solitary 
and  unknown  places,  calling  upon  the  name  of  my 
unfortunate  husband,  and  that  he,  when  he  was 
robbed  of  my  embrace,  even  still  smelling  of  per- 
fumes and  crowned  with  garlands,  did  trace  me  by 
my  steps  as  I  fled  on  feet  not  mine  own,  desiring  the 
aid  of  the  people  to  assist  him,  in  that  his  fair  wife 
was  violently  stolen  away  :  and  as  he  went  crying  up 
and  down,  one  of  the  thieves,  moved  with  indignation 
by  reason  of  his  pursuit,  took  up  a  great  stone  that  lay 
at  his  feet  and  threw  it  at  my  husband,  poor  youth, 
and  killed  him  :  by  the  terror  of  which  sight  I  awaked 
in  fear  from  so  dreadful  a  sleep."  Then  the  old  woman, 
rendering  out  like  sighs,  began  to  speak  in  this  sort : 
"  My  lady,  take  a  good  heart  unto  you,  and  be  not 
afraid  at  feigned  or  strange  visions  or  dreams,  for  as 
the  visions  of  the  day  are  accounted  false  and  untrue, 
so  the  visions  of  the  night  do  often  chance  contrary : 
and  indeed  to  dream  of  weeping,  beating,  and  killing 
is  a  token  of  good  luck  and  prosperous  change, 
whereas  contrary,  to  dream  of  laughing,  filling  the 
-belly  with  good  cheer,  or  dalliance  of  love,  is  sign  of 
sadness  of  heart,  sickness  of  body,  or  other  displeasure. 
But  I  will  tell  thee  a  pleasant  old  wives'  tale  to  put 
away  all  thy  sorrow  and  to  revive  thy  spirits  "  ;  and 
so  she  began  in  this  manner  : 

"There  was  sometime  a  certain  king,  inhabiting 
in  the  west  parts,  who  had  to  wife  a  noble  dame,  by 
whom  he  had  three  daughters  exceeding  fair :  of 
whom  the  two  elder  were  of  most  comely  shape  and 
beauty,  yet  they  did  not  excel  all  the  praise  and 



at  vero  puellae  iunioris  tarn  praecipua,  tarn  praeclara 
pulchritude  nee  exprimi  ac  ne  sufficienter  quidem 
laudari  sermonis  human!  penuria  poterat.  Multi  deni- 
que  civium  et  advenae  copiosi,  quos  eximii  spectaculi 
rumor  studiosa  celebritate  congregabat,  inaccessae 
formositatis  admiratione  stupidi  et  admoventes  ori- 
bus  suis  dexteram  primore  digito  in  erectum  pollicem 
residente  ut  ipsam  prorsus  deam  Venerem  venera- 
bantur  religiosis  adorationibus.  lamque  proximas 
civitates  et  attiguas  regiones  fama  pervaserat  deam, 
quamcaerulum  profundum  pelagi  peperit  et  ros  spu- 
mantium  fluctuum  educavit,  iam  numinis  sui  passim 
tributa  venia  in  mediis  conversari  populi  coetibus,  vel 
certe  rursum  novo  caelestium  stillarum  germine  non 
maria,  sed  terras  Venerem  aliam,  virginali  flore  prae- 
29  ditam,  pullulasse.  Sic  immensum  procedit  in  dies 
opinio,  sic  insulas  iam  proxumas  et  terrae  plusculum- 
provinciasque  plurimas  fama  porrecta  pervagatur : 
iam  multi  mortalium  longis  itineribus  atque  altissimis 
inaris  meatibus  ad  saeculi  specimen  gloriosum  con- 
fluebant :  Paphon  nemo,  Cnidon  nemo  ac  ne  ipsa 
quidem  Cythera  ad  conspectum  deae  Veneris  naviga- 

1  As  in  the  modern  actress's  gesture  of  "blowing  a  kiss." 
Pliny  (Natural  History,  xxviu.  2)  tells  us  that  "  in  adoring 



commendation  of  mortal  speech  ;  but  the  singular 
passing  beauty  and  maidenly  majesty  of  the  youngest 
daughter  was  so  far  excellent,  that  no  earthly  tongue 
could  by  any  means  sufficiently  express  or  set  out  the 
same:  by  reason  whereof  the  citizens  and  strangers 
there,  being  inwardly  pricked  by  zealous  affection 
to  behold  her  famous  person,  came  daily  by  thou- 
sands to  see  her,  and  as  astonied  with  admiration  of 
her  incomparable  beauty  did  no  less  worship  and 
reverence  her,  bringing  their  right  hands  to  their 
lips,1  with  the  forefinger  laid  against  the  thumb,  as 
tokens,  and  with  other  divine  adorations,  as  if  she  were 
Lady  Venus  indeed  :  and  shortly  after  the  fame  was 
spread  into  the  next  cities  and  bordering  regions  that 
the  goddess  whom  the  deep  seas  had  borne  and 
brought  forth,  and  the  froth  of  the  foaming  waves 
had  nourished  (to  the  intent  to  shew  her  high 
magnificency  and  power  in  earth  to  such  as  before 
did  honour  and  worship  her)  was  now  conversant 
amongst  mortal  men,  or  else  that  the  earth  and  not 
the  seas,  by  a  new  concourse  and  influence  of  the 
celestial  planets,  had  budded  arid  yielded  forth  a 
new  Venus,  endued  with  the  flower  of  virginity.  So 
daily  more  and  more  increased  this  opinion,  and  now 
was  her  flying  fame  dispersed  into  the  next  islands 
and  well  nigh  into  every  part  and  province  of  the 
whole  world.  Whereupon  innumerable  strangers 
resorted  from  far  countries,  adventuring  themselves 
by  long  journeys  on  land  and  by  great  travels  on 
water,  to  behold  this  wonder  of  the  age.  By  occasion 
whereof  such  a  contempt  grew  towards  the  goddess 
Venus,  that  no  person  travelled  unto  the  town 
Paphos  nor  unto  Cnidos,  no  nor  to  the  isle  Cythera 

the  gods  and  doing  reverence  to  their  images,  we  use  to  kiss 
our  right  hand  and  turn  about  with  our  whole  body." 



bant.  Sacra  diae  praetereuntur,  templa  deformantur, 
pulvinaria  proteruntur,1  caerimoniae  negleguntur  ;  in- 
coronata  simulacra  et  arae  viduae  frigido  cinere 
foedatae.  Puellae  supplicatur,  et  in  humanis  vul- 
tibus  deae  tantae  numina  placantur,  et  in  matutino 
progressu  virginis  victimis  et  epulis  Veneris  absentis 
nomen  propitiatur,  iamque  per  plateas  commeantem 
populi  frequenter  floribu*  sertis  et  solutis  appre- 

"Haec  honorum  caelestium  ad  puellae  mortalis 
cultum  immodica  translatio  verae  Veneris  vehe- 
menter  incendit  animos,  et  impatiens  indignationis, 
capite  quassanti  fremens  altius,  sic  secum  disserit : 
SO 'En  rerum  naturae  prisca  parens,  en  elementorum 
origo  initialis,  en  orbis  totius  alma  Venus,  quae  cum 
mortali  puella  partiario  maiestatis  honore  tractor  et 
nomen  meum  caelo  conditum  terrenis  sordibus  pro- 
fanatur!  Nimirum  communi  numinis  piamento 
vicariae  venerationis  incertum  sustinebo,  et  ima- 
ginem  meam  circumferet  puella  moritura.  Frustra 
me  pastor  ille,  cuius  iustitiam  fidemque  magnus 
comprobavit  lupiter,  ob  eximiam  speciem  tantis 
praetulit  deabus.  Sed  non  adeo  gaudens  ista,  quae- 
cumque  est,  meos  honores  usurpaverit :  iam  faxo 

i  Salmasias1  correction  of  the  T&SS'proferuntur. 


to  worship  her.  Her  liturgies  were  left  out,  her 
temples  defaced,  her  couches  1  contemned,  her  cere- 
monies neglected,  and  her  bare  altars  unswept  and 
foul  with  the  ashes  of  old  burnt  sacrifice.  For  why, 
every  person  honoured  and  worshipped  this  maiden 
instead  of  Venus,  calling  upon  the  divinity  of  that 
great  goddess  in  a  human  form,  and  in  the  morning 
at  her  first  coming  abroad,  offered  unto  her  oblations, 
provided  banquets,  called  her  by  the  name  of  Venus 
which  was  not  Venus  indeed,  and  in  her  honour,  as 
she  walked  in  the  streets,  presented  flowers  and 
garlands  in  most  reverent  fashion. 

"  This  sudden  change  and  alteration  of  celestial 
honour  unto  the  worship  of  a  mortal  maiden  did 
greatly  inflame  and  kindle  the  mind  of  very  Venus, 
who  (unable  to  temper  herself  from  indignation, 
shaking  her  head  in  raging  sort)  reasoned  with  her- 
self in  this  manner  :  '  Behold  I,  the  original  of  nature, 
the  first  beginning  of  all  the  elements,  behold  I,  the 
Lady  Venus  of  all  the  world,  am  now  joined  with  a 
mortal  maiden  as  a  partaker  of  my  honour  ;  my  name, 
registered  in  the  city  of  heaven,  is  profaned  and 
made  vile  by  terrene  absurdities.  If  I  shall  suffer 
any  mortal  creature  to  present  my  majesty  in  earth, 
and  must  be  content  with  sharing  the  godhead  and 
receiving  worship  through  other,  or  that  any  girl 
that  one  day  is  to  die  shall  bear  about  a  false  sur- 
mised shape  of  my  person,  then  in  vain  did  Paris 
that  shepherd  (in  whose  just  judgement  and  con- 
fidence the  great  Jupiter  had  affiance)  prefer  me 
above  the  other  great  goddesses  for  the  excellency 
of  my  beauty  :  but  she,  whatsoever  she  be,  shall  not 

i  Pulvinaria  :  cushions  used  in  certain  public  feasts  and 
processions  of  the  gods. 



huius   etiam  ipsius  illicitae   formositatis  paeniteat/ 
Et  vocat  confestim  puerum  suum  pinnatum  ilium  et 
satis  temerarium,  qui  malis  suis  moribus  contempta 
disciplina   publica,    flammis  et  sagittis  armatus  per 
alienas  domos  nocte  discurrens    et   omnium   matri- 
monia  corrumpens  impune  committit  tanta  flagitia, 
et  nihil  prorsus  boni  facit.    Hunc,  quamquam  genuiria 
licentia  procacem,  verbis  quoque  insuper  stimulat  et 
perducit  ad  illam  civitatem  et  Psychen — hoc    enim 
SI  nomine    puella    nuncupabatur — coram    ostendit   et, 
tota  ilia  perlata  de  formositatis  aemulatione  fabula, 
gemens  ac  fremens  indignatione  '  Per  ego  te '  inquit 
(  Maternae  caritatis  foedera  deprecor.,  per  tuae  sagit- 
tae  dulcia  vulnera,  per  flammae  istius  mellitas  ure- 
dines,  vindictam  tuae  parenti  sed  plenam  tribue  et 
in  pulchritudinem  contumacem   severiter1  vindica, 
idque  unum  et  prae  omnibus  unicum  volens  effice : 
virgo    ista    amore    flagrantissimo    teneatur   hominis 
extremi,  quern  et  dignitatis  et  patrimonii  simul  et 
incolumitatis  ipsius  Fortuna  damnavit,   tamque   in- 
fimi  ut  per  totum  orbem  non  inveniat  miseriae  suae 
comparem.'    Sic  effata,  et  osculis  hiantibus  filium  diu 
ac  pressule  saviata  proximas  oras  reflui  litoris  petit, 
plantisque  roseis   vibrantium    fluctuum   summo  rore 
calcato,    ecce   iam  profundum 2    maris    sudo  resedit 
vertice,  et,  ipsum  quod  incipit  velle,  et  statim,  quasi 
pridem    praeceperit,   non   moratur    marinum    obse- 

l  The  MSS  have  reverenter,  which  does  not  make  very  good 
pense.     The  alteration  is  due  to  Brant. 

a  The  MSS  and  older  editions  had  profundi,  in  which  case  the 

.      190 


for  nought  have  usurped  mine  honour,  but  she  shall 
shortly  repent  her  of  her  unlawful  loveliness.' 

"  Then  by  and  by  she  called  her  winged  son  Cupid, 
rash  enough  and  hardy,  who  by  his  evil  manners, 
contemning  all  public  justice  and  law,  armed  with 
fire  and  arrows,  running  up  and  down  in  the  nights 
from  house  to  house,  and  corrupting  the  lawful 
marriages  of  every  person,  doth  nothing  (and  yet  he 
is  not  punished)  but  that  which  is  evil :  and  although 
he  were  of  his  own  proper  nature  sufficient  prone  to 
work  mischief,  yet  she  egged  him  forward  with  words 
and  brought  him  to  the  city,  and  shewed  him  Psyche 
(for  so  the  maiden  was  called)  and  having  told  him  of 
her  rival  beauty,  the  cause  of  her  anger,  not  without 
great  rage,  '  1  pray  thee,'  quoth  she,  '  My  dear  child, 
by  the  motherly  bond  of  love,  by  the  sweet  wounds 
of  thy  piercing  darts,  by  the  pleasant  heat  of  thy  fire, 
revenge  fully  the  injury  which  is  done  to  thy  mother 
upon  the  false  and  disobedient  beauty  of  a  mortal 
maiden ;  and  this  beyond  all  I  pray  thee  without 
delay,  that  she  may  fall  in  desperate  love  with  the 
most  miserable  creature  living,  the  most  poor,  the 
most  crooked,  and  the  most  vile,  that  there  may  be 
none  found  in  all  the  world  of  like  wretchedness.' 
When  she  had  spoken  these  words,  she  embraced 
long  and  kissed  often  her  son,  and  took  her  voyage 
towards  the  shore  hard  by,  where  the  tides  flow  to 
and  fro  :  and  when  she  was  come  there,  and  had 
trodden  with  her  rosy  feet  upon  the  top  of  the 
trembling  waters,  then  the  deep  sea  became  ex- 
ceeding calm  upon  its  whole  surface,  and  at  her  will, 
as  though  she  had  before  given  her  bidding,  straight- 
meaning  would  be  that  Venus  took  her  seat  on  the  sea.  Koehler's 
correction  profundum  (a  substantive,  as  in  ch.  28)  is  a  great 
improvement,  and  the  sense  now  is  that  the  sea  became  calm. 



quium.  Adsunt  Nerei  filiae  chorum  canentes,  et 
Portunus  caerulis  barbis  hispidus,  et  gravis  piscoso 
sinu  Salacia,  et  auriga  parvulus  delphini  Palaemon  : 
iam  passim  maria  persultantes  Tritonum  catervae ; 
hie  concha  sonaci  leniter  buccinat,  ille  serico  tegmine 
flagrantiae  solis  obsistit  inimici,  alius  sub  oculis 
dominae  speculum  progerit,  curru  biiuges  alii  sub- 
natant.  Talis  ad  Oceanum  pergentem  Venerem 
comitatur  exercitus. 

32  t(  Interea  Psyche  cum  sua  sibi  perspicua  pulchri- 
tudine  nullum  decoris  sui  fructum  percipit.  Spec- 
tatur  ab  omnibus,  laudatur  ab  omnibus,  nee  quisquam, 
non  rex,  non  regius,  nee  de  plebe  saltern  cupiens 
eius  nuptiarum  petitor  accedit :  mirantur  quidem 
divinam  speciem,  sed  ut  simulacrum  fabre  politum 
mirantur  omnes.  Olim  duae  maiores  sorores,  quarum 
temperatam  formositatem  nulli  difFamarant  populi, 
procis  regibus  desponsae  iam  beatas  nuptias  adeptae, 
sed  Psyche  virgo  vidua  domi  residens  deflet  desertam 
suam  solitudinem,  aegra  corporis,  animi  saucia,  et 
quamvis  gentibus  totis  complacitam  odit  in  se  suam 

"Sic  infortunatissimae  filiae  miserrimus  pater,  sus- 
pectatis  caelestibus  odiis  et  irae  superum  metuens, 
dei  Milesii  vetustissimum  percontatur  oraculum  et  a 
tanto  numine  precibus  et  victimis  ingratae  virgini 
petit  nuptias  et  maritum.  Sed  Apollo,  quamquam 


way  appeared  her  servitors  from  the  deep :  for 
incontinent  came  the  daughters  of  Nereus  singing 
with  tunes  melodiously ;  Portunus  with  his  bristled 
and  rough  beard  of  azure ;  Salacia  with  her  bosom 
full  of  fish  ;  Palaemon  the  little  driver  of  the  dolphin ; 
and  the  bands  of  Triton  trumpeters  leaping  hither 
and  thither,  the  one  blowing  on  his  shell  with 
heavenly  noise,  another  turning  aside  with  a  silken 
veil  the  burning  heat  of  the  fierce  sun,  another 
holding  her  mirror  before  his  lady's  eyes,  others, 
yoked  two  together,  swimming  beneath  her  car. 
Such  was  the  company  which  followed  Venus 
marching  towards  the  middest  Ocean. 

"In  the  mean  season  Psyche  with  all  her  beauty 
received  no  fruit  of  her  honour.  She  was  wondered 
at  of  all,  she  was  praised  of  all,  but  she  perceived 
that  no  king  nor  prince  nor  any  of  the  inferior  sort 
did  repair  to  woo  her.  Every  one  marvelled  at  her 
divine  beauty,  but  only  as  it  were  at  some  image  well 
painted  and  set  out.  Her  other  two  sisters,  whose 
lesser  beauty  was  nothing  so  greatly  exalted  by  the 
people,  were  royally  married  to  two  kings,  but  the 
virgin  Psyche  sitting  at  home  alone  lamented  her 
solitary  life,  and  being  disquieted  both  in  mind  and 
body  (although  she  pleased  all  the  world)  yet  hated 
she  in  herself  her  own  beauty. 

"  Whereupon  the  miserable  father  of  this  unfortu- 
nate daughter,  suspecting  that  the  gods  and  powers 
of  heaven  did  envy  her  estate,  went  into  the  town 
called  Miletus  to  receive  the  most  ancient  oracle  of 
Apollo,  where  he  made  his  prayers  and  offered 
sacrifice,  and  desired  a  husband  for  his  neglected 
daughter ;  but  Apollo,  though  he  were  a  Grecian  of 
the  country  of  Ionia,  yet  for  the  sake  of  him  that 

N  193 


Graecus  et  lonicus,  propter  Milesiae  conditorem  sic 
Latina  sorte  respondit : 

33      '  Montis  in  excelsi  scopulo,  rex,  siste  puellam 

Ornatam  naundo  funerei  thalami : 
Nee  speres  generum  mortali  stirpe  creatum, 

Sed  saevum  atque  ferum  vipereumque  malum, 
Quod  pinnis  volitans  super  aethera  cuncta  fatigat 

Flammaque  et  ferro  singula  debilitat ; 
Quod  tremit  ipse  lovis,  quo  numina  terrificantur, 

Fluminaque  horrescunt  et  Stygiae  tenebrae.' 

Rex,  olim  beatus,  affatu  sanctae  vaticinationis  accepto 
pigens  tristisque  retro  domum  pergit  suaeque  coniugi 
praecepta  sortis  enodat  infaustae.  Maeretur,  fletur, 
lamentatur  diebus  plusculis  :  sed  dirae  sortis  iam  ur- 
get  taeter  effectus,  iam  feralium  nuptiarum  miserri- 
mae  virgini  choragium  struitur,  iam  taedae  lumen 
atrae  fuliginis  cinere  marcescit,  et  sonus  tibiae  zygiae 
mutatur  in  querulum  Lydii  modum,  cantusque  laetus 
hymenaei  lugubri  finitur  ululatu,  et  puella  nuptura 
deterget  lacrimas  ipso  suo  flammeo.  Sic  affectae  do- 
mus  triste  fatum  cuncta  etiam  civitas  congemebat, 
luctuque  publico  confestim  congruens  edicitur  ius- 

34  "  Sed  monitis  caelestibus  parendi  necessitas  misel- 
lam  Psychen  ad  destinatam  poenam  efflagitabat :  per- 
fectis  igitur  feralis  thalami  cum  summo  maerore 
sollemnibus  toto  prosequente  populo  vivum  produci- 
tur  funus  et  lacrimosa  Psyche  comitatur  non  nuptias 


telleth  this  Milesian  tale,  gave  answer  in  Latin 
verse,  the  sense  whereof  was  this  : 

(  Let  Psyche's  corpse  be  clad  in  mourning  weed 

And  set  on  rock  of  yonder  hill  aloft : 
Her  husband  is  no  wight  of  human  seed, 

But  serpent  dire  and  fierce  as  may  be  thought, 
Who  flies  with  wings  above  in  starry  skies 

And  doth  subdue  each  thing  with  fiery  flight. 
The  gods  themselves  and  powers  that  seem  so 

With  mighty  Jove  be  subject  to  his  might; 
The  rivers  black  and  deadly  floods  of  pain 
And  darkness  eke  as  thrall  to  him  remain.' 

The  king,  beforetimes  happy,  when  he  heard  the 
prophecy  of  Apollo,  returned  home  sad  and  sor- 
rowful, and  declared  to  his  wife  the  miserable  and 
unhappy  fate  of  his  daughter :  then  they  began  to 
lament  and  weep,  and  passed  over  many  days  in 
great  sorrow.  But  now  was  the  sad  fulfilment  of 
the  oracle  at  hand,  now  the  time  approached  of 
Psyche's  funeral  marriage ;  preparation  was  made, 
the  torches  burned  weakly  with  black  and  sooty 
flame,  the  pleasant  sound  of  the  nuptial  flute  was 
turned  into  the  sad  Lydian  strains,  the  melody  of 
Hymeriaeus  was  ended  with  deadly  howling,  the 
maiden  that  should  be  married  did  wipe  her  eyes 
with  her  veil  ;  all  the  people  of  the  city  wept  likewise 
the  gloomy  fate  of  a  fallen  house  ;  and  with  great 
lamentation  was  ordained  a  public  mourning  for  that 

"  But  necessity  compelled  that  poor  Psyche  should 
be  brought  to  her  appointed  doom,  according  to  the 
divine  commandment ;  and  when  the  solemnity  of 
the  wretched  wedding  was  ended  with  great  sorrow, 



sed  exequias  suas.     Ac  dum  maesti  parentes  et  tanto 
malo  perciti  nefarium  facinus  perficere  cunctantur, 
ipsa  ilia  filia  talibus  eos  adhortatur  vocibus  :  <  Quid 
infelicem   senectam   fletu    diutino    cruciatis?     Quid 
spiritum  vestrum,  qui  magis  meus  est,  crebris  eiula- 
tibus  fatigatis  ?     Quid  lacrimis  inefficacibus  ora  mihi 
veneranda  foedatis  ?     Quid  laceratis  in  vestris  oculis 
mea  lumina  ?     Quid  canitiem  scinditis  ?     Quid  pec- 
tora_,  quid  ubera  sancta  tunditis  ?     Haec  erunt  vobis 
egregiae  formositatis  meae  praeclara  praemia?     In- 
vidiae   nefariae   letali   plaga    percussi   sero  sentitis. 
Cum  gentes  et  populi  celebrarent  nos  divinis  honori- 
bus,  cum  novam  me  Venerem  ore  consono  nuncu- 
parent,  tune  dolere,  tune  flere,  tune  me  iam  quasi 
peremptam  lugere  debuistis  :  iam  sentio,  iam  video 
solo  me  nomine  Veneris  perisse.     Ducite  me,  et  cui 
sors  addixit  scopulo  sistite  :  festino  felices  istas  nup- 
tias  obire,  festino  generosurn  ilium  maritum  meum 
videre.      Quid   differo  ?     Quid    detrecto    venientem 
35  qui  totius  orbis  exitio  natus  est  ? '     Sic  profata  virgo 
conticuit  ingressuque  iam  valido  pompae  populi  pro- 
sequentis  sese  miscuit.     Itur  ad  constitutum  scopu- 
lum  montis  ardui,  cuius  in  summo  cacumine  statutam 
puellam  cuncti  deserunt,  taedasque  nuptiales.  quibus 
praeluxerant,   ibidem   lacrimis    suis  extinctas  relin- 
quentes  deiectis   capitibus  domuitionem  parant,  et 
miseri   quidem   parentes    eius    tanta    clade    defessi 
clausae  domus  abstrusi  tenebris  perpetuae  nocti  sese 



all  the  people  followed  the  living  corpse,  and  they 
went  to  bring  this  sorrowful  spouse,  not  to  her 
marriage,  but  to  her  final  end  and  burial.  And 
while  the  father  and  mother  of  Psyche  did  go  for- 
ward, weeping  and  crying  and  delaying  to  do  this 
enterprise,  Psyche  spake  unto  them  in  this  sort : 
'  Why  torment  you  your  unhappy  age  with  continual 
dolour  ?  Why  trouble  you  your  breath,  which  is 
more  rather  mine  than  yours,  with  these  many  cryings  ? 
Why  soil  ye  with  useless  tears  your  faces  which  I 
ought  to  adore  and  worship  ?  Why  tear  you  my  eyes 
when  ye  tear  yours  ?  Why  pull  you  your  hoar  hairs  ? 
Why  knock  you  your  breasts  that  are  holy  to  me  ? 
Now  you  see  the  reward  of  my  excellent  beauty : 
now,  now,  you  perceive  (but  too  late)  the  deadly 
plague  of  envy.  When  the  people  did  honour  me 
with  divine  honours  and  all  together  call  me  new 
Venus,  then  you  should  have  grieved,  then  you 
should  have  wept,  then  you  should  have  sorrowed, 
as  though  I  had  been  then  dead :  for  now  I  see  and 
perceive  that  I  am  come  to  this  misery  by  the  only 
name  of  Venus.  Bring  me,  and  (as  fortune  hath 
appointed)  place  me  on  the  top  of  the  rock  ;  I 
greatly  desire  to  end  my  happy  marriage,  I  greatly 
covet  to  see  my  noble  husband.  Why  do  I  delay  ? 
Why  should  I  refuse  him  that  is  appointed  to 
destroy  all  the  world  ? '  Thus  ended  she  her  words, 
and  thrust  herself  with  strong  gait  amongst  the  people 
that  followed  :  then  they  brought  her  to  the  ap- 
pointed rock  of  the  high  hill,  and  set  her  thereon 
and  so  departed.  The  torches  and  lights  were  put 
out  with  the  tears  of  the  people,  and  every  man 
gone  home  with  bowed  heads  :  the  miserable  parents, 
well  nigh  consumed  with  sorrow,  closed  themselves 
in  their  palace  and  gave  themselves  to  everlasting 



dedidere.  Psychen  autem  paventem  ac  trepidam 
et  in  ipso  scopuli  vertice  deflentem  mitis  aura  mol- 
liter  spirantis  Zephyri,  vibratis  hinc  inde  laciniis  et 
reflate  sinu,  sensim  levatam  suo  tranquillo  spiritu 
vehens  paulatim  per  devexa  rupis  excelsae,  vallis 
subditae  florentis  caespitis  gremio  leniter  delapsam 



darkness.  Thus  poor  Psyche  being  left  alone  weep- 
ing and  trembling  on  the  highest  top  of  the  rock,  there 
came  a  gentle  air  of  softly  breathing  Zephyrus  and 
carried  her  from  the  hill,  with  a  meek  wind,  which 
retained  her  garments  up,  and  by  little  and  little 
brought  her  down  into  a  deep  valley,  where  she  was 
laid  in  a  soft  grassy  bed  of  most  sweet  and  fragrant 



1  "  PSYCHE  teneris  et  herbosis  locis  in  ipso  toro  roscidi 
graminis  suave  recubans,  tanta  mentis  perturbatione 
sedata,  dulce  conquievit.  lamque  sufficient!  recreata 
somno  placido  resurgit  animo  :  videt  lucum  proceris 
et  vastis  arboribus  consitum,  videt  fontem  vitreo  latice 
perlucidum  medio  luci  meditullio.  Prope  fontis  al- 
lapsum  domus  regia  est,  aedificata  non  humanis 
manibus  sed  divinis  artibus :  iam  scies  ab  introitu 
primo  dei  cuiuspiam  luculentum  et  amoenum  videre 
te  diversorium.  Nam  summa  laquearia,  citro  et  ebore 
curiose  cavata,  subeunt  aureae  columnae,  parietes 
omnes  argenteo  caelamine  conteguntur,  bestiis  et  id 
genus  pecudibus  occurrentibus  ob  os  introeuntium. 
Mirus  prorsum  homo,  immo  semideus  vel  certe  deus, 
qui  magnae  artis  subtilitate  tantum  efferavit  argentum  : 
enimvero  pavimenta  ipsa  lapide  pretioso  caesim  de- 
minuto  in  varia  picturae  genera  discriminantur : 
vehementer  iterum  ac  saepius  beatos  illos  qui  super 
gemmas  et  monilia  calcant !  Iam  ceterae  partes  longe 

"THUS  fair  Psyche  being  sweetly  couched  amongst 
the  soft  and  tender  herbs,  as  in  a  bed  of  dewy  grass 
and  fragrant  flowers,  and  having  qualified  the  troubles 
and  thoughts  of  her  restless  mind,  was  now  well 
reposed  :  and  when  she  had  refreshed  herself  suffi- 
ciently with  sleep,  she  rose  with  a  more  quiet  and 
pacified  mind,  and  fortuned  to  espy  a  pleasant  wood 
environed  with  great  and  mighty  trees,  and  likewise 
a  running  river  as  clear  as  crystal ;  in  the  middest 
and  very  heart  of  the  woods,  well  nigh  at  the  fall  of 
the  river,  was  a  princely  edifice,  wrought  and  builded, 
not  by  the  art  or  hand  of  man,  but  by  the  mighty 
power  of  a  god  :  and  you  would  judge  at  the  first 
entry  therein,  that  it  were  some  pleasant  and  worthy 
mansion  for  the  powers  of  heaven.  For  the  embow- 
ings  above  were  curiously  carven  out  of  citron  and 
ivory,  propped  and  undermined  with  pillars  of  gold ; 
the  walls  covered  and  seeled  with  silver ;  divers  sorts 
of  beasts  were  graven  and  carved,  that  seemed  to 
encounter  with  such  as  entered  in :  all  things  were 
so  curiously  and  finely  wrought,  that  it  seemed  either 
to  be  the  work  of  some  demigod,  or  God  himself,  that 
put  all  these  beasts  into  silver.  The  pavement  was 
all  of  precious  stone,  divided  and  cut  one  from  another, 
whereon  was  carved  divers  kinds  of  pictures,  in  such 
sort  that  blessed  and  thrice  blessed  were  they  which 
might  go  upon  such  a  pavement  of  gems  and  orna- 



lateque  dispositae  domus  sine  pretio  pretiosae  totique 
parietes  solidati  massis  aureis  splendore  proprio  corus- 
cant,  ut  diem  suum  sibi  domus  faciat  licet  sole  no- 
lente ;  sic  cubicula,  sic  porticus,  sic  ipsae  valvae  ful- 
gurant.  Nee  setius  opes  ceterae  maiestati  domus 
respondent,  ut  equidem  illud  recte  videatur  ad  con- 
versationem  humanam  magno  lovi  fabricatum  caeleste 

2  "  Invitata     Psyche    talium   locorum    oblectatione 
propius  accessit  et  paulo  fidentior  intra  limen  sese 
facit,   mox   prolectante  studio  pulcherrimae  visionis 
rimatur  singula  et  altrinsecus  aedium  horrea  sublimi 
fabi'ica  perfecta  magnisque  congesta  gazis  conspicit ; 
nee  est  quicquam  quod  ibi  non  est :  sed  praeter  cete- 
ram   tantarum     divitiarum   admirationem    hoc    erat 
praecipue  mirificum,  quod  nullo  vinculo,  nullo  claustro, 
nullo  custode  totius  orbis  thesaurus  ille  muniebatur. 
Haec  ei  summa  cum  voluptate  visenti  offert  sese  vox 
quaedam  corporis  sui  nuda,  et '  Quid,'  inquit  '  Do- 
mina,   tantis   obstupescis     opibus  ?     Tua   sunt    haec 
omnia.     Prohinc  cubiculo  te  refer,  et  lectulo  lassitu- 
dinem   refove,  et    ex    arbitrio  lavacrum  pete.     Nos 
quarum  voces  accipis,  tuae  famulae  ;  sedulo  tibi  prae- 
Tninistrabimus  nee  corporis  curatae  tibi  regales  epulae 

3  "  Sensit  Psyche  divinae  providentiae  beatitudinem 
monitusque,  voces  informes  audiens,  et  prius  somno 
et  mox  lavacro  fatigationem  sui  diluit,  visoque  statim 
proximo  semirotundo  suggestu,  propter  instrumentum 


merits :  every  part  and  angle  of  the  house  was  So 
well  adorned  by  the  precious  stones  and  inestimable 
treasure  there,  and  the  walls  were  so  solidly  built  up 
with  great  blocks  of  gold,  that  glittered  and  shone 
in  such  sort  that  the  chambers,  porches,  and  doors 
gave  out  the  light  of  day  as  it  had  been  the  sun. 
Neither  otherwise  did  the  other  treasure  of  the  house 
disagree  unto  so  great  a  majesty,  that  verily  it  seemed 
in  every  point  a  heavenly  palace  fabricated  and 
builded  for  Jupiter  himself  wherein  to  dwell  among 
men.  i 

"  Then  Psyche,  moved  with  delectation,  approached 
nigh,  and  taking  a  bold  heart  entered  into  the  house 
led  on  by  the  beauty  of  that  sight,  and  beheld  every- 
thing there  with  great  affection  :  she  saw  storehouses 
wrought  exceeding  fine,  and  replenished  with  abund- 
ance of  riches,  and  finally,  there  could  nothing  be 
devised  which  lacked  there,  but  amongst  such  great 
store  of  treasure,  this  was  more  marvellous,  that  there 
was  no  closure,  bolt,  or  lock,  and  no  guardian  to  keep 
the  same.  And  when  with  great  pleasure  she  viewed 
all  these  things,  she  heard  a  voice  without  any  body, 
that  said :  '  Why  do  you  marvel,  lady,  at  so  great 
riches  ?  Behold  all  that  you  see  is  at  your^'command- 
ment :  wherefore  go  you  into  the  chamber  and  repose 
yourself  upon  the  bed,  and  desire  what  bath  you  will 
have,  and  we,  whose  voices  you  hear,  be  your  ser- 
vants, and  ready  to  minister  unto  you  according  to 
your  desire  :  in  the  mean  season,  when  you  have 
refreshed  your  body,  royal  meats  and  dainty  dishes 
shall  be  prepared  for  you.' 

"  Then  Psyche  perceived  the  felicity  of  divine 
providence,  and  according  to  the  advertisement  of 
the  incorporeal  voices  she  first  reposed  herself  upon 
the  bed,  and  then  refreshed  her  body  in  the  bath. 



cenatorium  rata  refectui  suo  commodum,  libens  ac- 
cumbit.  Et  illico  vini  nectarei  eduliumque  variorum 
fercula  copiosa,  nullo  serviente  sed  tantum  spiritu 
quodam  impulsa,  subministrantur :  nee  quemquam 
tamen  ilia  videre  poterat,  sed  verba  tantum  audiebat 
excidentia  et  solas  voces  famulas  habebat.  Post 
opimas  dapes  quid  am  introcessit  et  cantavit  invisus 
et  alius  citharam  pulsavit,  quae  videbatur  nee  ipsa  : 
tune  modulatae  multitudinis  conferta  vox  aures  eius 
affertur,  ut,  quamvis  hominum  nemo  pareret,  chorus 
tamen  esse  pateret. 

4  "  Finitis.  voluptatibus,  vespera  suadente,  concedit 
Psyche  cubitum,  iamque  provecta  nocte  clemens 
quidam  sonus  aures  eius  accedit.  Tune  virginitati 
suae  pro  tanta  solitudine  metuens  et  pavet  et  horrescit, 
et  quovis  malo  plus  timet  quod  ignorat :  iamque 
aderat  ignobilis  maritus  et  torum  inscenderat  et 
uxorem  sibi  Psychen  fecerat  et  ante  lucis  exortum 
propere  discesserat :  statim  voces  eubiculo  praesto- 
latae  novam  nuptam  interfectae  virginitatis  curant. 
Haec  diutino  tempore  sic  agebantur,  atque,  ut  est 
natura  redditum,  novitas  per  assiduam  consuetudinem 
delectationem  ei  commendarat,  et  sonus  vocis  in- 
certae  solitudinis  erat  solacium.  Interea  parentes 
eius  indefesso  luctu  atque  maerore  consenescebant, 
latiusque  porrecta  fama  sorores  illae  maiores  cuncta 


This  done,  she  saw  the  table  garnished  with  meats, 
and  a  round  chair  to  sit  down,  and  gladly  reposed 
herself  beside  the  array  for  dining,  which  she  thought 
was  set  very  conveniently  for  her  refreshment.  Then 
straightway  all  sorts  of  wines  like  nectar  were  brought 
in,  and  plentiful  dishes  of  divers  meats,  not  by  any- 
body but  as  it  were  by  some  divine  spirit  or  breath, 
for  she  could  see  no  person  before  her,  but  only  hear 
words  falling  on  every  side,  and  she  had  only  voices 
to  serve  her.  After  that  all  the  rich  services  were 
brought  to  the  table,  one  came  in  and  sang  invisibly, 
another  played  on  the  harp,  and  that,  too,  could  not 
be  seen  ;  the  harmony  of  a  large  concourse  did  so 
greatly  thrill  in  her  ears,  that  though  there  were  no 
manner  of  person,  yet  seemed  she  in  the  midst  of> 
a  great  quire. 

"All  these  pleasures  finished,  when  night  ap- 
proached Psyche  went  to  bed ;  and  when  she  was 
laid,  and  the  night  far  advanced,  still  a  sweet  sound 
came  about  her  ears  ;  then  she  greatly  feared  for  her 
virginity,  because  she  was  alone ;  she  trembled  and 
quaked  the  more  for  that  she  knew  not  what  evil 
might  come  to  pass.  Then  came  her  unknown  husband 
to  her  bed,  and  after  that  he  had  made  her  his  very 
wife,  he  rose  in  the  morning  before  day  and  departed. 
Soon  after  came  those  invisible  voices,  consoling  the 
bride  for  that  virginity  she  had  lost,  and  thus  she 
passed  a  great  while :  and  so  (as  it  naturally  hap- 
pened) that  which  was  first  a  novelty,  by  continual 
custom  did  at  last  bring  her  great  pleasure,  but 
specially  the  sound  of  the  voices  was  a  comfort  unto 
her  being  alone  and  knowing  nothing  of  her  estate. 
During  this  time  her  father  and  mother  did  nothing 
but  weep  and  lament  in  their  old  age,  and  the  fame 
of  it  was  all  blown  abroad,  and  her  two  sisters, 



cognorant,  propereque  maestae  atque  lugubres  deserto 
Lare  certatim  ad  parentum  suorum  conspectum  affa- 
tumque  perrexerant. 

5  "  Ea    nocte    ad   suara    Psychen   sic    infit   maritus 
(namque  praeter  oculos  et  manibus  et  auribus  is  non 
nihil  sentiebatur) :  '  Psyche  dulcissima  et  cara  uxor, 
exitiabile  tibi  periculum  minatur  fortuna  saevior,  quod 
observandum  pressiore  cautela  censeo.     Sorores,  iam 
tuae  mortis  opinione    turbatae   tuumque    vestigium 
requirentes,  scopulum  istum  protinus  aderunt,  quarum 
si   quas    forte    lamentationes   acceperis,   neque   re- 
spondeas,   immo   nee    prospicias   omnino  ;    ceterum 
mihi  quidem  gravissimum  dolorem,  tibi  vero  summum 
creabis  exitium.' 

"  Annuit  et  ex  arbitrio  mariti  se  facturam  spo- 
pondit.  sed  eo  simul  cum  nocte  dilapso  diem  totum 
lacrimis  ac  plangoribus  misella  consumit,  se  nunc 
maxime  prorsus  perisse  iterans^  quae  beati  carceris 
custodia  saepta  et  humanae  conversationis  colloquio 
viduata  nee  sororibus  quidem  suis  de  se  maerentibus 
opem  salutarem  ferre  ac  ne  videre  eas  quidem  omnino 
posset ;  nee  lavacro  nee  cibo  nee  ulla  denique  re- 
fectione  recreata  flens  ubertim  decessit  ad  somnum. 

6  Nee  mora,  cum  paulo  maturius  lectum  maritus  ac- 
cubans,  eamque  etiamnunc  lacrimantem  com  plexus,  sic 
expostulat :  '  Haecine  mihi  pollicebare,  Psyche  mea  ? 
Quid  iam  de  te  tuus  maritus  expecto,  quid  spero  ? 
Et  perdia  et  pernox  nee  inter  amplexus  coniugales 
desinis  cruciatum.      Age  iam  nunc  ut  voles  et  animo 
tuo    damnosa   poscenti   pare  to :    tantum    memineris 
meae  seriae  monitionis  cum  coeperis  sero  paenitere.' 


hearing  of  her  most  miserable  fortune,  came  with 
great  dolour  and  sorrow  to  see  and  speak  with  their 

"  Now  on  that  very  night  Psyche's  husband  spake 
unto  her  (for  she  might  not  know  him  with  her  eyes, 
but  only  with  her  hands  and  ears)  and  said :  '  O  my 
sweet  spouse  and  dear  wife,  fortune  doth  menace  unto 
thee  imminent  peril  and  danger,  whereof  I  wish  thee 
greatly  to  beware :  for  know  thou  that  thy  sisters, 
thinking  thou  art  dead,  be  greatly  troubled  and  will 
soon  come  to  the  mountain  by  thy  footsteps  ;  whose 
lamentations,  if  thou  fortune  to  hear,  beware  that 
thou  do  in  no  wise  either  make  answer  or  look  up 
toward  them.  For  if  thou  do,  thou  shalt  purchase  to 
me  a  great  sorrow,  and  to  thyself  utter  destruction.' 
Psyche  (hearing  her  husband)  promised  that  she 
would  do  all  things  as  he  commanded,  but  after  that 
he  was  departed,  and  the  night  passed  away,  she 
lamented  and  cried  all  day  following,  thinking  that 
now  she  was  past  all  hope  of  comfort  in  that  she  was 
both  closed  within  the  walls  of  a  fine  prison,  deprived 
of  human  conversation,  and  commanded  not  to  aid  or 
assist  her  sorrowful  sisters,  no,  nor  once  to  see  them. 
Thus  she  passed  all  the  day  in  weeping,  and  went  to 
bed  at  night  without  any  refection  of  meat  or  bathing, 
but  incontinently  after  came  her  husband  earlier  than 
he  was  wont,  who  (when  he  had  embraced  her  sweetly) 
as  she  still  wept,  began  to  say  :  '  Is  it  thus  that  you 
perform  your  promise,  my  sweet  wife  ?  What  do  I 
find  here,  that  am  your  husband  ?  What  have  I  to 
hope?  Pass  you  all  the  day  and  the  night  in 
weeping,  and  will  you  not  cease  even  in  your  hus- 
band's arms  ?  Go  to,  do  what  you  will,  purchase 
your  own  destruction,  and  when  you  find  it  so,  then 
remember  my  words  and  repent,  but  too  late.' 


"Tune  ilia  precibus  et  dum  se  morituram  com- 
minatur  extorquet  a  marito  cupitis  annuat,  ut  sorores 
videat,  luctus  mulceat,  ora  conferat  :  sic  ille  novae 
nuptae  precibus  veniam  tribuit,  et  insuper  quibus- 
cumque  vellet  eas  auri  vel  monilium  donare  concessit, 
sed  identidem  monuit  ac  saepe  terruit,  nequando 
sororum  pernicioso  consilio  suasa  de  forma  mariti 
quaerat,  neve  se  sacrilega  curiositate  de  tanto  fortu- 
narum  suggestu  pessum  deiciatnec  suum  postea  con- 
tingat  amplexum.  Gratias  egit  marito,  iamque  laetior 
'  Sed  prius  '  inquit  '  Centies  moriar  quam  tuo  isto 
dulcissimo  connubio  caream  :  amo  enim,  et  efflictim 
te,  quicumque  es,  diligo  aeque  ut  meum  spiritum, 
nee  ipsi  Cupidini  compare.  Sed  istud  etiam  meis 
precibus,  oro,  largire  et  illi  tuo  famulo  Zephyro  prae- 
cipe  simili  vectura  sorores  hie  mihi  sistat ' :  et  impri- 
mens  oscula  suasoria  et  ingerens  verba  mulcentia  et 
iungens  membra  cohibentia,  haec  etiam  blanditiis 
astruit :  ( Mi  mellite,  mi  marite,  tuae  Psychae  dulcis 
anima.'  Vi  ac  potestate  Venerei  susurrus  invitus 
succubuit  maritus  et  cuncta  se  facturum  spopondit, 
atque  iam  luce  proximante  de  manibus  uxoris 

7  "  At  illae  sorores  percontatae  scopulum  locumque 
ilium,  quo  fuerat  Psyche  deserta,  festinanter  ad- 
veniunt,  ibique  difflebant  oculos  et  plangebant  ubera, 
quoad  crebrisearum  eiulatibus  saxa  cautesque  parilem 


"  Then  she  desired  her  husband  more  and  more, 
assuring  him  that  she  should  die,  unless  he  would 
grant  her  desire  that  she  might  see  her  sisters, 
whereby  she  might  speak  with  them  and  comfort 
them ;  whereat  at  length  he  was  contented,  and 
moreover  he  willed  that  she  should  give  them  as 
much  gold  and  jewels  as  she  would,  but  he  gave  her 
a  further  charge,  warning  her  often,  and  saying  that 
she  should  beware  that  she  should  covet  not  (being 
moved  by  the  pernicious  counsel  of  her  sisters)  to  see 
the  shape  of  his  person,  lest  by  her  wicked  curiosity 
she  should  be  deprived  of  so  great  and  worthy  estate 
and  nevermore  feel  his  embrace.'  Psyche  being 
glad  herewith  rendered  unto  him  most  entire 
thanks  and  said :  '  My  honey,  my  husband,  I 
had  rather  die  an  hundred  times  than  be  separate 
from  your  sweet  company ;  for  whosoever  you 
be,  I  love  and  retain  you  within  my  heart,  as 
if  you  were  mine  own  spirit,  and  I  make  you  not 
less  than  if  you  were  Cupid  himself:  but  I 
pray  you  grant  this  likewise,  that  you  would  com- 
mand your  servant  Zephyrus  to  bring  my  sisters 
down  into  the  valley,  as  he  brought  me,  and  place 
them  here ' ;  wherewithal  she  kissed  him  sweetly, 
and  desired  him  with  tender  words  to  grant  her 
request,  and  clasped  him  closely  to  her  bosom,  calling 
him  her  spouse,  her  sweetheart,  her  joy,  her  own 
very  soul,  whereby  she  enforced  him  by  the  power  of 
her  love  (though  unwilling)  to  her  mind,  and  he 
promised  to  do  her  will,  and  when  morning  came  he 
departed  away  from  her  arms. 

"After  long  search  made,  the  sisters  of  Psyche 

came  unto  the  hill  where  she  had  been  set  on  the 

rock,  and  cried  with  a  loud  voice  and  beat  their 

breasts,  in  such  sort  that  the  rocks  and  stones  with 

o  209 

Somim  resultarent.     lamque  nomine  proprio  sororehi 
miseram  ciebant,  quoad  sono  penetrabili  vocis  ulula- 
bilis  per  prona  delapso  amens  et  trepida  Psyche  pro- 
currit  e  domo  et,  ( Quid  '  inquit  '  Vos  miseris  lamen- 
tationibus  nequicquam  effligitis?     Quam  lugetis  ad- 
sum.     Lugubres  voces  desinite,  et  diutinis  lacrimis 
madentes  genas  siccate  tandem,  quippe  cum  iam  pos- 
sitis  quam    plarigebatis    amplecti.'      Tune   vocatum 
Zephyrum  praecepti  maritalis  admonet :   nee  mora, 
cum  ille  parens  imperio  statim  clementissimis  flatibus 
innoxia  vectura  deportat  illas.     Iam  mutuis  amplexi- 
bus  et  festinantibus  saviis  sese  perfruuntur,  et  illae 
sedatae   lacrimae    postliminio    redeunt    prolectante 
gaudio.     '  Sed  et  tectum  '  inquit  '  Et  Larem  nostrum 
laetae  succedite,  et  afflictas  animas  cum  Psyche  vestra 
8  recreate.'     Sic  allocuta  summas  opes  domus  aureae 
vocumque  servientium  populosam  familiam  demon- 
strat  auribus  earum,  lavacroque  pulcherrimo  et  in- 
humanae    mensae    lautitiis    eas    opipare    reficit,   ut 
illarum  prorsus  caelestium  divitiarum  copiis  affluen- 
tibus  satiatae  iam  praecordiis  penitus  nutrirent  in- 
vidiam.       Denique     altera    earum    satis    scrupulose 
curioseque  percontari  non  desinit,  quis  illarum  cae- 
lestium rerum  dominus.,  quisve  vel   qualis  ipsius  sit 
maritus :  nee  tamen  Psyche  coniugale  illud  praecep- 
tum  ullo  pacto  temerat  vel  pectoris  arcanis  exigit, 
sed  e  re  nata  confingit  esse  iuvenem  quendam   et 
speciosum,  commodum  lanoso  barbitio  genas  inum- 
brantem,  plerumque  rurestribus  ac  montanis  venati- 


echoes  answered  again  their  frequent  howlings :  and 
when  they  called  their  sister  by  her  name,  so  that 
their  lamentable  cries  came  down  the  mountain  unto 
her  ears,  she  came  forth,  very  anxious  and  now  almost 
out  of  her  mind,  and  said  :  '  Behold,  here  is  she  for 
whom  you  weep  ;  I  pray  you  torment  yourself  no 
more,  and  dry  those  tears  with  which  you  have  so 
long  wetted  your  cheeks,  for  now  may  you  embrace 
her  for  whom  you  mourned.' 

"  By  and  by  she  commanded  Zephyrus  by  the  ap- 
pointment of  her  husband  to  bring  them  down ; 
neither  did  he  delay,  for  with  gentle  blasts  he  re- 
tained them  up,  and  laid  them  softly  in  the  valley  : 
I  am  not  able  to  express  the  often  embracing,  kissing, 
and  greeting  which  was  between  them  three ;  and 
those  tears  which  had  been  then  laid  apart  sprang 
forth  again  for  joy.  '  Come  in/  quoth  Psyche.  '  Into 
our  house  with  gladness  and  refresh  your  afflicted 
minds  with  meyoursister.'  After  this  she  shewed  them 
the  storehouses  of  treasure,  she  caused  them  to  hear 
the  great  company  of  voices  which  served  her,  the 
fair  bath  was  made  ready,  and  she  entertained 
them  richly  with  dainty  meats  of  her  celestial  table, 
and  when  they  had  eaten  and  filled  themselves  with 
divine  delicacies  they  conceived  great  envy  within 
their  hearts  :  and  one  of  them  being  very  curious  in 
every  point,  did  not  cease  to  demand  what  her  hus- 
band was,  and  who  was  the  lord  of  so  precious  a 
house ;  but  Psyche,  remembering  the  promise  which 
she  made  to  her  husband,  did  not  let  it  go  forth  from 
the  secret  places  of  her  heart,  but  with  timely 
colour  feigned  that  he  was  a  young  man  of  comely 
stature  with  soft  down,  rather  than  a  beard,  just 
beginning  to  shadow  his  cheeks,  and  had  great  de- 
light in  hunting  in  the  hills  and  dales  hard  by  :  and 




bus  occupatum,  et  ne  qua  sermonis  procedentis  labe 
consilium  taciturn  proderetur,  auro  facto  gemmosis- 
que  monilibus  onustas  eas  statim  vocato  Zephyro 
tradit  reportandas. 

9      "  Quo  protenus  perpetrate  sorores  egregiae  domum 
redeuntes,  iamque  gliscentis  invidiae  felle  flagrantes 
multa  secum  sermonibus  mutuis  perstrepebant :  sic 
denique  infit  altera  :  '  En  orba  et  saeva  et  iniqua  For- 
tuna!     Hocine  tibi  complacuit,  ut  utroque  parente 
prognatae  diversam   sortem    sustineremus  ?     Et  nos 
quidem,  quae  natu   maiores  sumus,   maritis   advenis 
ancillae  deditae,  extorres  et  Lare  et  ipsa  patria  de- 
gamus  longe  parentum  velut  exulantes,  haec  auteic 
novissima,     quam    fetu    satiante    postremus    partus 
effudit,  tantis  opibus  et  deo  marito  potita  sit,  quae 
nee   uti  recte  tanta  bonorum  copia  novit?     Vidisti, 
soror,  quanta  in  domo  iacent  et  qualia  monilia,  quae 
praenitent  vestes,  quae  splendicant  gemmae,  quantum 
praeterea  passim  calcatur  aurum :  quod  si  maritum 
etiam  tarn  formosum  tenet,  ut  affirmat,  nulla  nunc  in 
orbe  toto  felicior  vivit.     Fortassis  tamen  procedente 
consuetudine  et    affectione    roborata    deam    quoque 
illam  deus  maritus  efficiet.      Sic  est  Hercule,  sic  se 
gerebat  ferebatque  :  iam  iam  sursum  respicit  et  deam 
spirat  mulier,  quae  voces  ancillas  habet  et  ventis  ipsis 
imperitat.     At  ego  misera  primum  patre  meo  seniorem. 
maritum    sortita    sum,    dein  cucurbita  calviorem  et 


lest  by  her  long  talk  she  should  be  found  to  trip  or 
fail  in  her  words  and  betray  her  secret  counsel,  she 
filled  their  laps  with  gold  and  ornaments  of  jewels, 
and  commanded  Zephyrus  to  carry  them  away. 

"When  this  was  done  these  worthy  sisters  took 
their  ways  homeward  to  their  own  houses,  and  the 
poison  of  envy  that  they  bare  against  Psyche  grew 
hot  within  them,  so  that  they  murmured  with  much 
talk  between  them  ;  and  one  began  :  ' Behold  a  cruel 
and  contrary  fortune  !  Doth  it  It  please  thee 
that  we  (born  all  of  one  parent)  have  divers  des- 
tinies, but  especially  we,  that  are  the  elder  two,  be 
married  to  strange  husbands,  made  as  handmaidens, 
and  as  it  were  banished  from  our  country  and  friends; 
whereas  our  younger  sister,  last  born,  which  is  ever  the 
weakest,  hath  so  great  abundance  of  treasure  and 
gotten  a  god  to  her  husband,  but  hath  no  skill  how 
to  use  so  great  plenty  of  riches.  Saw  you  not, 
sister,  what  was  in  the  house  ?  What  great  store  of 
jewels,  what  glittering  robes,  what  gems,  yea,  what 
gold  we  trod  on  ?  So  that  if  she  have  a  goodly  hus- 
band according  as  she  affirmeth  there  is  none  that 
liveth  this  day  more  happy  in  all  the  world  than 
she.  And  so  it  may  come  to  pass  that  at  length, 
if  the  great  affection  and  love  which  he  beareth 
unto  her  do  continually  increase,  he  may  make 
her  a  goddess,  for  (by  Hercules)  such  was  her 
port,  so  she  behaved  herself.  Now  already  she 
holds  up  her  countenance,  now  she  breathes  the 
goddess,  that  as  a  woman  hath  voices  to  serve  her, 
and  lays  her  commands  upon  the  winds.  But  I,  poor 
wretch,  have  first  married  a  husband  older  than  my 
father,  more  bald  than  a  coot,1  more  weak  than 

1  The  Latin  uses  another  comparison  :  "  balder  than  a 


quovis  puero  pusilliorern,  cuuctam  domum  seris  et 
catenis  obditam  custodientem.' 

10  "  Suscipit  alia  :  '  Ego  vero  maritum  articular!  etiam 
morbo  complicatum  curvaturaque,  ac  per  hoc  rarissimo 
Venerem  meam  recolentem  sustineo,  plerumque  de- 
tortos  et  duratos  in  lapidem  digitos  eius  perfricans, 
fomentis  olidis  et  pannis  sordidis  et  faetidis  cataplas- 
matibus  manus  tarn  delicatas  istas  adurens,  nee  uxoris 
officiosam  faciem  sed  medicae  laboriosam  personam 
sustinens.  Et  tu  quidem,  soror,  videris,  quam  patienti 
vel  potius  servili — dicam  enim  libere  quod  sentio — 
haec  perferas  animo  :  enimvero  ego  nequeo  sustinere 
ulterius  tarn  beatam  fortunam  illapsam l  indignae. 
Recordare  enim  quam  superbe,  quam  arroganter 
nobiscum  egerit  et  ipsa  iactatione  immodicae  ostenta- 
tionis  tumentem  suum  prodiderit  animum,  deque 
tantis  divitiis  exigua  nobis  invita  proiecerit,  con- 
festimque  praesentia  nostra  gravata  propelli  et  efflari 
exsibilarique  nos  iusserit.  Nee  sum  mulier  nee 
omnino  spiro,  iiisi  earn  pessum  de  tantis  opibus  deie- 
cero.  Ac  si  tibi  etiam.  ut  par  est^  inacuit  nostra  con- 
tumeliajConsilium  validuvn  requiramns  ambae.  lamque 
ista,  quae  ferimus>  non  parentibus  nostris  ac  nee  ulli 
monstremus  alii,  immo  nee  omnino  quicquam  de  eius 
salute  norimus :  sat  est  quod  ipsae  vidimus  quae 
vidisse  paenituit,  nedum  ut  genitoribus  et  omnibus 
populis  tarn  beatum  eius  differamus  praeconium  :  nee 
sunt  enim  beati  quorum  divitias  nemo  novit.  Sciet 
se  11011  ancillas  sed  sorores  habere  maiores  :  et  nunc 
quidem  concedamus  ad  maritos  et  Lares  pauperes 
nostros  sed  plane  sobrios  revisamus  diuque  cogita- 
tionibus  pressioribus  instructae  ad  superbiam  poeni- 

1  MSS  collapsam.  The  alteration  is  due  to  Bluemner,  but 
other  suggestions,  such  asLipsius'  coUatamor  Helui's  aUapsam, 
may  as  well  be  right. 



a  child,  and  one  that  locketh  up  all  the  house  with 
bolts  and  chains.' 

"Then  said  the  other  sister  :  f  And  in  faith  1  am 
married  to  a  husband  that  hath  the  gout,  bent 
crooked,  not  courageous  in  paying  the  debt  of  love  ; 
I  am  fain  to  rub  and  mollify  his  crabbed  and  stony 
fingers,  and  I  soil  my  white  and  dainty  hands  with 
stinking  plasters  and  rank-smelling  salves  and  with 
the  corruption  of  filthy  clouts,  so  that  he  uses  me 
not  like  a  wife,  but  more  like  a  surgeon's  servant. 
And  you,  my  sister,  seem  to  bear  this  with  a  patient, 
nay  (that  I  may  speak  freely)  with  a  servile  mind, 
but  I  cannot  abide  to  see  our  younger  sister  so 
unworthy  in  such  great  felicity.  Saw  you  not,  I 
pray,  how  proudly  and  arrogantly  she  handled  us 
even  now,  and  how  in  vaunting  herself  she  uttered 
her  presumptuous  mind,  how  she  cast  grudgingly 
a  little  gold  into  our  laps,  and  (being  weary  of  our 
company)  commanded  that  we  should  be  borne  and 
blown  and  whistled  away?  Verily,  I  live  not  nor 
am  I  a  woman,  but  I  will  cast  her  utterly  down  from 
her  rich  estate  :  and  if  you,  my  sister,  as  you  should, 
be  so  far  made  bitter  herewith  as  I,  let  us  consult 
boldly  together,  and  not  shew  this  that  we  have  to 
any  person,  no,  nor  yet  to  our  parents,  nor  tell  that 
we  know  that  she  liveth.  For  it  sufficeth  that  we 
have  seen  her,  whom  it  repenteth  to  have  seen : 
neither  let  us  declare  her  good  fortune  to  our  father, 
nor  to  all  the  world,  for  they  be  not  wealthy,  whose 
riches  are  unknown :  so  shall  she  know  that  she 
hath  not  abject  slaves,  but  very  elder  sisters.  But 
now  let  us  go  home  to  our  husbands  and  poor  houses, 
that  be  yet  honest  enough,  and  when  we  are  better 
instructed  with  most  careful  plotting,  let  us  return 
the  stronger  to  suppress  her  pride.'  So  this  «-vil 


11  endam  firmiores  redeamus.'  Placet  pro  bono  duabus 
mails  malum  consilium,  totisque  illis  tam  pretiosis 
muneribus  absconditis,  comam  trahentes  et  pvoinde 
ut  merebantur  ora  lacerantes  simulates  redintegrant 
fletus.  Ac  sic  parentes  quoque  redulcerato  prorsum 
dolore  raptim  deterrentes,  vesania  turgidae  domus 
suas  contendunt  dolum  scelestum,  immo  vero  parri- 
cidium  struentes  contra  sororem  insontem. 

11  Interea  Psychen  maritus  ille  quern  nescit  rursum 
suis  illis  nocturnis  sermonibus  sic  commonet : '  Videsne 
quantum  tibi  periculum  ?  Velitatur  Fortuna  eminus 
ac,  nisi  longe  firmiter  praecaves,  mox  comminus 
congredietur.  Perfidae  lupulae  magnis  conatibus 
nefarias  insidias  tibi  comparant,  quarum  summa  est, 
ut  te  suadeant  meos  explorare  vultus,  quos,  ut  tibi 
saepe  praedixi,  non  videbis  si  videris.  Ergo  igitur  si 
posthac  pessimae  iliac  lamiae  noxiis  animis  armatae 
venerint — venient  autem,  scio — neque  omnino  ser_ 
monem  conferas  et,  si  id  tolerare  pro  genuina 
simplicitate  proque  animi  tui  teneritudine  non  potu- 
eris,  certe  de  marito  nil  quicquam  vel  audias  vel 
respondeas  :  nam  et  familiam  nostram  iam  pro- 
pagabimus  et  hie  adhuc  infantilis  uterus  gestat  nobis 
infantem  alium,  si  texeris  nostra  secreta  silentio, 

12  divinum,  si  profanaveris,  mortalem.'  Nuntio  Psyche 
laeta  florebat  et  divinae  subolis  solacio  plaudebat  et 


counsel  seemed  good  to  these  two  evil  women,  and 
they  hid  that  great  treasure  which  Psyche  gave  them, 
and  tare  their  hair  and  befouled  their  faces  renewing 
their  false  and  forged  tears.  Thus  did  they  terrify 
their  father  and  mother,  and  doubled  their  sorrows 
and  griefs  ;  and  then  full  of  ire  and  farced  with  envy 
they  took  their  voyage  homeward  devising  the  hurt, 
nay  the  slaughter  and  destruction  of  their  harmless 

"  In  the  mean  season  the  husband  of  Psyche,  whom 
she  knew  not,  did  warn  her  again  in  the  night  with 
these  words :  f  Seest  thou  not,'  quoth  he,  '  What 
peril  and  danger  evil  fortune  doth  threaten  unto  thee 
from  afar  ?  Whereof  if  thou  take  not  good  heed  in 
time,  it  will  shortly  come  upon  thee :  for  the  un- 
faithful harlots  do  greatly  endeavour  to  set  their 
snares  to  catch  thee,  and  their  purpose  is  to  make 
and  persuade  thee  to  behold  my  face,  which  if  thou 
once  fortune  to  see  (as  I  have  often  told  thee)  thou 
shalt  see  no  more  :  wherefore  if  these  naughty  hags, 
armed  with  wicked  minds,  do  chance  to  come  again 
(as  I  think  not  otherwise  but  that  they  will)  take 
heed  that  thou  talk  not  with  them,  but  simply 
suffer  them  to  speak  what  they  will ;  howbeit,  if 
thou  canst  not  restrain  thyself  for  thy  natural  sim- 
plicity and  for  the  tender  years  of  thy  mind,  beware 
that  thou  have  no  communication  of  thy  husband, 
nor  answer  a  word  if  they  fortune  to  question  of  me. 
So  will  we  increase  our  stock,  and  thou  hast  a  young 
and  tender  child  couched  in  this  young  and  tender 
belly  of  thine,  who  shall  be  made,  if  thou  conceal 
my  secret,  an  immortal  god,  but  otherwise  a  mortal 
creature.'  Then  Psyche  was  very  glad  that  she 
should  bring  forth  a  divine  babe,  and  proud  of  the 
pledge  that  was  to  be  born,  and  very  joyful  in  that 



futuri  pignoris  gloria  gestiebat  et  materni  nominis 
dignitate  gaudebat  :  crescentes  dies  et  menses 
exeuntes  anxia  numerat,  et  sarcinae  nesciae  rudi- 
mento  miratur  de  brevi  punctulo  tantum  incrcmen- 
tulum  locupletis  uteri. 

"  Sed  iam  pestes  illae  taeterrimaeque  furiae 
anhelantes  vipereum  virus  et  festinantes  impia 
celeritate  navigabant.  Tune  sic  iterum  momentarius 
maritus  suam  Psychen  admonet :  *  Dies  ultima  et 
casus  extremus  :  et  sexus  infestus  et  sanguis  inimicus 
iam  sumpsit  arma  et  castra  commovit  et  aciem  direxit 
et  classicum  personavit ;  iam  mucrone  destricto 
iugulum  tuum  nefariae  tuae  sorores  petunt  Heu 
quantis  urguemur  cladibus,  Psyche  dulcissima  !  Tui 
nostrique  miserere,  religiosaque  continentia  domum, 
maritum,  teque  et  istum  parvulum  nostrum  im- 
minentis  ruinae  infortunio  libera,  nee  illas  scelestas 
feminas,  quas  tibi  post  internecivum  odium  et  calcata 
sanguinis  foedera  sorores  appellare  non  licet,  vel 
videas  vel  audias,  cum  in  morem  Sirenum  scopulo 
promiiientes  funestis  vocibus  saxa  personabunt.' 
13  "Suscipit  Psyche  singultu  lacrimoso  sermonem  in- 
certans :  '  lamdudum,  quod  sciam,  fidei  atque  par- 
ciloquio  meo  perpendisti  documenta,  nee  eo  setius 
approbabitur  tibi  nunc  etiam  tirmitas  animi  mei.  Tu 
modo  Zephyro  nostro  rursum  praecipe  fungatur 
obsequio,  et  in  vicem  denegatae  sacrosanctae  ima- 

i)  is 


she  should  be  honoured  as  a  mother :  she  reckoned 
and  numbered  carefully  the  days  and  months  that 
passed,  and  being  never  with  child  before,  did  marvel 
greatly  that  her  belly  should  swell  so  big  from  so 
small  a  beginning. 

"  But  those  pestilent  and  wicked  furies,  breathing 
out  their  serpentine  poison,  were  hastening  with 
wicked  speed  to  bring  their  enterprise  to  pass.  Then 
Psyche  was  warned  again  by  her  husband,  while  he 
briefly  tarried  with  her,  in  this  sort :  '  Behold  the 
last  day  and  the  extreme  case.  The  enemies  of  thy 
own  sex  and  blood  have  armed  themselves  against  us, 
pitched  their  camps,  set  their  host  in  array,  sounded 
for  advance,  and  are  now  marching  towards  us, 
for  thy  two  sisters  have  drawn  their  swords  and 
are  ready  to  slay  thee.  Oh  with  what  force  and 
slaughter  are  we  assailed  this  day,  sweet  Psyche :  I 
pray  thee  to  take  pity  on  thyself,  and  on  me, 
keep  a  seal  on  thy  lips,  and  deliver  thy  husband, 
and  thyself,  and  this  infant  within  thy  belly  from 
so  great  and  imminent  a  danger,  and  see  not 
neither  hear  these  cursed  women,  which  are  not 
worthy  to  be  called  thy  sisters,  for  their  great  and 
murderous  hatred,  and  breach  of  sisterly  amity,  for 
they  will  come  (like  Sirens)  to  the  mountain,  and 
yield  out  therein  their  piteous  and  lamentable 

"  When  Psyche  had  heard  these  words,  she  sighed 
sorrowfully  and  said  :  '  O  dear  husband,  this  long 
time  you  have  had  experience  and  trial  of  my  faith 
and  my  silence,  and  doubt  you  not  but  that  I  will 
persevere  in  the  same  stedfastness  of  mind  :  where- 
fore command  you  our  servant  Zephyrus  that  he  may 
do  as  he  hath  done  before,  to  the  intent  that  instead 
of  your  form  that  you  have  forbidden  me  to  see,  yet 


ginis  tuae  redde  saltern  conspectum  sororum.  Per 
istos  cinnameos  et  undique  pendulos  crines  tuos,  per 
teneras  et  teretes  et  mei  similes  genas,  per  pectus 
nescioquo  calore  fervidum,  sic  in  hoc  saltern  parvulo 
cognoscam  faciem  tuam  :  supplicis  anxiae  piis  pre- 
cibus  erogatus  germani  complexus  indulge  fructum 
et  tibi  devotae  Psychae  animam  gaudio  recrea.  Nee 
quicquam  amplius  in  tuo  vultu  require,  iam  nil 
officiunt  mihi  vel  ipsae  nocturnae  tenebrae  :  teneo  te 
meum  lumen.'  His  verbis  et  amplexibus  mollibus 
decantatus  maritus,  lacrimasque  eius  suis  crinibus 
detergens,  se  facturum  spopondit  et  praevertit  statim 
lumen  nascentis  diei. 

14  "  lugum  sororium  consponsae  factionis,  ne  parenti- 
bus  quidem  visis,  recta  de  navibus  scopulum  petunt 
ilium  praecipiti  cum  velocitate,  nee  venti  ferentis 
oppertae  praesentiam,  licentiosa  cum  temeritate 
prosiliunt  in  altum.  Nee  immemor  Zephyrus  regalis 
edicti,  quamvis  invitus,  susceptas  eas  gremio  spirantis 
aurae  solo  reddidit.  At  illae  incunctatae  statim 
conferto  vestigio  domum  penetrant,  complexaeque 
praedam  suam  sorores  nomine  mentientes  thesau- 
rumque  penitus  abditae  fraudis  vultu  laeto  tegentes, 
sic  adulant : '  Psyche,  non  ita  ut  pridem  parvula,  et  ipsa 
iam  mater  es.  Quantum,  putas,  boni  nobis  in  ista 


I  may  comfort  myself  with  the  sight  of  my  sisters. 
I  pray  you  by  this  lovely  and  fragrant  hair  of  yours 
that  hangs  down,  by  these  round  cheeks,  delicate 
and  tender  like  mine  own,  by  your  pleasant  warm 
breast,  by  that  shape  and  face  that  I  shall  learn  at 
length  by  the  child  in  my  belly,  hear  the  solemn 
prayer  of  my  anxious  beseeching,  grant  the  fruit  of 
my  desire  that  I  may  embrace  my  sisters,  refresh 
your  dear  spouse  Psyche  with  joy,  who  is  bound  and 
linked  unto  you  for  ever.  I  little  esteem  to  see  your 
visage  and  figure,  little  do  I  regard  the  night  and 
darkness,  for  I  hold  you  in  my  arms,  my  only  light.' 
Her  husband  (being  as  it  were  enchanted  with  these 
words,  and  compelled  by  violence  of  her  often  em- 
bracing, wiping  away  her  tears  with  his  hair)  did 
yield  unto  his  wife,  and  promised  that  which  she 
desired,  and  before  morning  was  come  departed  as 
he  accustomed  to  do. 

"  Now  her  sisters,  their  plot  well  compacted, 
arrived  on  land,  and  without  even  visiting  of  their 
father  and  mother  never  rested  till  they  came  to 
the  rock,  and  there  leaped  down  rashly  from  the 
hill  themselves,  waiting  not  for  the  breeze  that  was 
to  bear  them  ;  forgat  not  then  Zephyrus  the  divine 
commandment,  and  brought  them  down  in  the  bosom 
of  the  wind  (though  it  were  against  his  will)  and 
laid  them  in  the  valley  without  any  harm.  By  and 
by  they  went  into  the  palace  to  their  sister  without 
leave,  and  when  they  had  eftsoons  embraced  their 
prey,  falsely  assuming  the  shew  of  sisters,  and  hiding 
the  store  of  their  malice  beneath  a  smiling  face,  with 
flattering  words  they  said:  'O  dear  sister  Psyche, 
know  you  that  you  are  now  no  more  so  slim  and 
slender,  but  already  almost  a  mother  ?  O  what 
great  joy  bear  you  unto  us  in  your  belly  !  What 


geris  perula,  quantis  gaudiis  totam  domum  nostram 
hilarabis  !  O  nos  beatas  quas  infantis  aurei  nutri- 
menta  laetabunt !  Qui  si  parentum,  ut  oportet, 
pulchritudini  respondent,  prorsus  Cupido  nascetur.' 

15  "  Sic   affectione    simulata   paulatim    sororis    inva- 
dunt  animum ;  statimque  eas  lassitudine  viae  sedili- 
bus  refotas  et  balnearum  vaporosis  fontibus  curatas 
pulcherrime  triclinio  mirisque  illis  et  beatis  edulibus 
atque  tuccetis  oblectat.     lubet  citharam  loqui,  psalli- 
tur ;  tibias  agere,  sonatur  ;  chores  canere,  cantatur  : 
quae  cuncta  nullo  praesente  dulcissiinis  modulis  ani- 
mos   audientium   remulcebant.     Nee   tamen  sceles- 
tarum   feminarum    nequitia  vel  ipsa  mellita  cantus 
dulcedine    mollita    conquievit,    sed    ad    destinatam 
fraudium  pedicam    sermonem    conferentes    dissimu- 
lanter  occipiunt  sciscitari  qualis  ei  maritus  et  unde 
natalium,   secta  cuia  proveniret.     Tune  ilia  simpli- 
citate  nimia   pristini   sermonis  oblita,  novum    com- 
mentum  instruit  atque  maritum  suum  de  provincia 
proxima  magnis   pecuniis  negotiantem  iam  medium 
cursum    aetatis    agere,    interspersum   rara    canitie. 
Nee    in    sermone    isto    tantillum    morata    rursum 
opiparis   muneribus    eas   onustas    ventoso    vehiculo 

16  "Sed  dum  Zephyri  tranquillo  spiritu   sublimatae 
domum  redeunt,  sic  secum  altercantes  :  '  Quid,  soror, 
dicimus  de  tam  monstruoso  fatuae  illius  mendacio  ? 


a  comfort  will  it  be  unto  all  the  house  !  How  happy 
shall  we  be  that  shall  see  this  golden  infant  increase 
and  grow  ! — who,  if  he  be  like  his  parents  in  beauty, 
as  it  is  necessary  he  should,  there  is  no  doubt  but  a 
new  Cupid  shajl  be  born.' 

"  By  this  kind  of  pretended  love  they  went  about 
to  win  Psyche  by  little  and  little  ;  but  because  they 
were  weary  with  travel,  they  sat  them  down  in  chairs, 
and  after  that  they  had  washed  their  bodies  in  warm 
and  pleasant  baths,  they  went  into  a  parlour,  where 
all  those  wonderful  meats  and  goodly  haggis  were 
ready  prepared.  Psyche  commanded  the  harp  to  play, 
and  it  was  done  ;  the  flute  to  sound,  and  so  it  was  ; 
to  make  a  quire,  and  song  brake  forth  :  but  no 
person  was  seen,  by  whose  sweet  harmony  and  modu- 
lation the  sisters  of  Psyche  were  greatly  delighted. 
Howbeit  the  wickedness  of  these  cursed  women  was 
nothing  suppressed  by  the  sweet  and  honeyed  noise 
of  these  instruments,  but  they  settled  themselves  to 
work  their  treason  and  snare  against  Psyche,  de- 
manding with  guile  who  was  her  husband,  and  of 
what  parentage  or  race  he  was  :  then  she  (having 
forgotten,  by  too  much  simplicity,  that  which  she  had 
before  spoken  of  her  husband)  invented  a  new  answer, 
and  said  that  her  husband  was  of  a  near  province,  a 
merchant  in  great  affairs,  and  a  man  of  a  middle  age, 
having  his  head  interspersed  with  a  few  grey  hairs  ; 
which  when  she  had  shortly  said  (because  she  would 
have  no  further  talk)  she  filled  their  lap  full  of  the 
richest  gifts,  and  bade  them  again  be  borne  away 
of  the  wind. 

"  In  their  return  homeward,  carried  aloft  by  the 
gentle  breath  of  Zephyrus,  they  murmured  with 
themselves,  saying  :  '  How  say  you,  sister,  to  so  great 
and  apparent  a  lie  of  doting  Psyche  ?  For  first  she 


Tune  adolescens  modo  florenti  lanugine  barbam  in- 
struens,  nunc  aetate  media  candenti  canitie  lucidus : 
quis  ille  quern  temporis  modici  spatium  repentina  se- 
necta  reformavit  ?  Nil  aliud  repperies,,  mi  soror, 
quam  vel  mendacio  istam  pessimam  feminam  con- 
fingere  vel  formam  mariti  sui  nescire ;  quorum  utrum 
verum  est,  opibus  istis  quam  primum  exterminanda 
est.  Quod  si  viri  sui  faciem  ignorat,  deo  profecto 
denupsit  et  deum  nobis  praegnatione  ista  gerit. 
Certe  si  divini  puelli — quod  absit — haec  mater 
audierit,  statim  me  laqueo  nexili  suspendam.  Ergo 
interim  ad  parentes  nostros  redeamus,  et  exordio 
sermonis  huius  quam  concolores  fallacias  attexa- 

17  "  Sic  inflammatae,  parentibus  fastidienter  appel- 
latis  et  nocte  turbata  vigiliis,  perditae  matutino 
scopulum  pervolant  et  inde  solito  venti  praesidio 
vehementer  devolant,  lacrimisque  pressura  palpe- 
brarum  coactis,  hoc  astu  puellam  appellant :  '  Tu 
quidem  felix  et  ipsa  tanti  mali  ignorantia  beata 
sedes  incuriosa  periculi  tui ;  nos  autem,  quae  pervigili 
cura  rebus  tuis  excubamus,  cladibus  tuis  misere 
cruciamur.  Pro  vero  namque  comperimus  nee  te, 
sociae  scilicet  doloris  casusque  tui,celare  possumus  im- 
manem  colubrum  multinodis  voluminibus  serpentem, 
veneno  noxio  colla  sanguiiiantem  hiantemque  ingluvie 
profunda,  tecum  noctibus  latenter  acquiescere.  Nunc 
recordare  sortis  Pythicae,  quae  te  trucis  bestiae 
nuptiis  destinatam  esse  clamavit :  et  multi  coloni, 


said  that  her  husband  was  a  young  man  with  the 
down  of  his  chin  but  just  beginning  to  spring,  and 
now  she  saith  that  he  hath  a  head  half  grey  with 
age  :  what  is  he  that  in  so  short  space  can  suddenly 
become  so  old  ?  You  shall  find  it  no  otherwise,  my 
sister,  but  that  either  this  cursed  quean  hath  invented 
a  great  lie  or  else  that  she  never  saw  the  shape  of 
her  husband  :  and  whichever  be  true,  we  must,  as 
soon  as  may  be,  drive  her  forth  from  that  rich  estate 
of  hers.  And  if  it  be  so  that  she  never  saw  him, 
then  verily  she  is  married  to  some  god,  and  hath  a 
young  god  for  us  in  her  belly ;  but  if  it  be  a  divine 
babe  of  the  which  she  shall  soon  be  called  the 
mother  (as  God  forbid  it  should)  then  may  I  go  and 
hang  myself :  wherefore  let  us  go  now  to  our  parents, 
and  with  such  forged  lies  as  this  let  us  colour  the 

"  After  they  were  thus  inflamed  and  had  proudly 
visited  their  parents,  having  passed  the  night  in 
fitful  watchings,  they  returned  again  to  the  mountain, 
and  by  the  aid  of  the  wind  Zephyrus  were  carried 
down  into  the  valley ;  and  after  they  had  strained 
their  eyelids  to  enforce  themselves  to  weep,  they 
called  unto  Psyche  in  this  sort :  '  Thou  (ignorant  of 
so  great  evil)  thinkest  thyself  sure  and  happy,  and 
sittest  at  home  nothing  regarding  thy  peril,  whereas 
we  go  about  thy  affairs,  and  are  exceeding  sorry  for 
the  harm  that  shall  happen  unto  thee :  for  we  are 
credibly  informed,  neither  can  we  but  utter  it  unto 
thee,  that  are  the  companions  of  thy  grief  and 
mishap,  that  there  is  a  great  serpent  of  many  coils, 
full  of  deadly  poison,  with  a  ravenous  and  gaping 
throat,  that  lieth  with  thee  secretly  every  night. 
Remember  the  oracle  of  Apollo,  who  pronounced 
that  thou  shouldest  be  married  to  a  dire  and  fierce 
P  225 

quique    circumsecus    venantur,    et    accolae    plurimi 
viderunt  eum  vespera  redeuntem  e  pastu  proximique 

18  flurainis  vadis  innatantem.     Nee  diu  blandis  alimoni- 
arum  obsequiis  te  saginaturum  omnes  affirmant,  sed 
cum  primum  praegnationem  tuamplenus  maturaverit 
uterus,  opimiore  fructu  praeditam  devoraturum.     Ad 
haec  iam  tua  est  existimatio,  utrum  sororibus  pro  tua 
cara  salute  sollicitis  assentiri  velis  et  declinata  morte 
nobiscum    secura    periculi    vivere,    an    saevissimae 
bestiae   sepeliri  visceribus :  quod   si   te   ruris  huius 
vocalis  solitude  vel  clandestinae  Veneris  faetidi  peri- 
culosique  concubitus  et  venenati  serpentis  amplexus 
delectant,  certe  piae  sorores  nostrum  fecerimus.' 

"  Tune  Psyche  misella,  utpote  simplex  et  animi 
tenella,  rapitur  verborum  tarn  tristium  formidine : 
extra  terminum  mentis  suae  posita  prorsus  omnium 
mariti  monitionum  suarumque  promissionum  me- 
moriam  efFudit  et  in  profundum  calamitatis  sese 
praecipitavit,  tremensque  et  exsangui  colore  lurida 
tertiata  verba  semihianti  voce  substrepens  sic  ad  illas 

19  ait :  '  Vos  quidem,  carissimae  sorores,  ut  par  erat,  in 
officio  vestrae  pietatis  permanetis,  verum  et  illi  qui 
talia  vobis  affirmant  non  videntur  mihi  mendacium 
fingere  :  nee  enim  unquam  viri  mei  vidi  faciem  vel 
omnino  cuiatis  sit  novi,  sed  tantum  nocturnis  sub- 
audiens  vocibus  maritum  incerti   status    et   prorsus 
lucifugam  tolero,  bestiamque  aliquam  recte  dicenti- 
bus    vobis    merito    consentio :     meque    magnopere 



beast ;  and  many  of  the  inhabitants  hereby,  and  such 
as  hunt  about  in  the  country,  affirm  that  they  have 
seen  him  towards  evening  returning  from  pasture  and 
swimming  over  the  river :  whereby  they  do  un- 
doubtedly say  that  he  will  not  pamper  thee  long 
with  delicate  meats,  but  when  the  time  of  delivery 
shall  approach,  he  will  devour  both  thee  and  thy  child 
as  a  more  tender  morsel.  Wherefore  advise  thyself, 
whether  thou  wilt  agree  unto  us  that  are  careful  for 
thy  safety,  and  so  avoid  the  peril  of  death,  and  be 
contented  to  live  with  thy  sisters,  or  whether  thou 
wilt  remain  with  the  most  cruel  serpent,  and  in  the 
end  be  swallowed  into  the  gulf  of  his  body.  And  if 
it  be  so  that  thy  solitary  life,  thy  conversation  with 
voices,  and  this  servile  and  dangerous  pleasure,  that 
is  the  secret  and  filthy  love  of  the  poisonous  serpent, 
do  more  delight  thee ;  say  not  but  that  we  have 
played  the  parts  of  natural  sisters  in  warning  thee.' 
"Then  the  poor  simple  Psyche  was  moved  with 
the  fear  of  so  dreadful  words,  and  (being  amazed  in 
her  mind)  did  clean  forget  the  admonitions  of  her 
husband  and  her  own  promises  made  unto  him.  And 
(throwing  herself  headlong  into  extreme  misery)  with 
a  wan  and  sallow  countenance,  scantly  uttering  and 
stammering  forth  her  words,  at  length  began  to  say 
in  this  sort :  '  O  my  most  dear  sisters,  I  heartily  thank 
you  for  your  great  kindness  towards  me,  and  I  am 
now  verily  persuaded  that  they  which  have  told 
you  hereof,  have  told  you  of  nothing  but  truth, 
for  I  never  saw  the  shape  of  my  husband,  neither 
know  I  from  whence  he  came  ;  only  I  hear  his  voice 
in  the  night,  in  so  much  that  I  have  an  unknown 
husband,  and  one  that  loveth  not  the  light  of  the 
day ;  which  causeth  me  to  suspect  that  he  is  some 
beast  as  you  affirm.  Moreover  I  do  greatly  fear  to 



semper  a  suis  terret  aspectibus,  malumque  grande  de 
vultus  curiositate  praeminatur.  Nunc  si  quam 
salutarem  opem  periclitanti  sorori  vestrae  potestis 
afferre,  lain  nunc  subsistite ;  ceterum  incuria  sequens 
prioris  providentiae  beneficia  corrumpet.' 

"Tune  nanctae  iam  portis  patentibus  nudatum 
sororis  animum  facinerosae  mulieres,  omissis  tectae 
machinae  latibulis,  destrictis  gladiis  fraudium  sim- 

20  plicis  puellae  paventes  cogitationes  invadunt.      Sic 
denique  altera : '  Quoniam  nos  originis  nexus  pro  tua 
incolumitate  periculum  quidem  nullum  ante  oculos 
habere  compellit,  viam  quae  sola  deducit  iter  ad  salu- 
tem  diu  diuque  cogitatam  monstrabimus  tibi.    Nova- 
culam  praeacutam,  appulsu  etiam  palmulae  lenientis 
exasperatain,  tori  quaparte  cubare  consuesti  latenter 
absconde  lucernamque  concinnem  completam  oleo, 
claro  lumine  praemicantem  subde  aliquo  claudentis 
aululae  tegrnine,  omnique  isto  apparatu  tenacissime 
dissimulate,    postquam    sulcatos    intrahens    gressus 
cubile    solitum    conscenderit    iamque    porrectus    et 
exordio  somui   prementis   implicitus  alturn  soporem 
flare    coeperit,  toro  delapsa  nudoque    vestigio  pen- 
silem  gradum  pullulatim  minuens,  caecae  tenebrae 
custodia  liberata  lucerna,  praeclari  tui  facinoris  oppor- 
tunitatem  de   luminis  consilio   mutuare   et  ancipiti 
telo  illo  audaciter,  prius  dextera  sursum  elata,  nisu 
quam  valido  noxii  serpentis  noclum  cervicis  et  capi- 
tis  abscinde.     Nee  nostrum  tibi  deerit  subsidium,  sed 
cum  primurn  illius  morte  salutem  tibi  feceris^  anxiae 
praestolabimur,  cunctisque  istis  ocius  tecum  relatis, 

21  votivis  nuptiis  hominem  te  iungemus  homini.'     Tali 
verborum  incendio  flammata  viscera  sororis  iam  pror- 


see  him,  for  he  doth  menace  and  threaten  great  evil 
unto  me,  if  I  should  go  about  to  spy,  and  behold  his 
shape  ;  wherefore,  my  loving  sisters,  if  you  have  any 
wholesome  remedy  for  your  sister  in  danger,  give  it 
now  presently  :  for  if  ye  be  now  careless  so  to  do, 
ye  will  make  of  none  effect  the  kindness  of  your 
watchfulness  that  was  before.' 

"  Then  those  wicked  women,  opening  the  gates  of 
their  sister's  heart, did  putawaynowall  privy guile,and 
egged  her  forward  in  her  fearful  thoughts,  drawing 
openly  the  sword  of  deceit,  and  persuading  her  to 
do  as  they  would  have  her;  and  one  of  them  began 
and  said:  'Because  that  we,  obliged  by  our  kinship 
with  you,  little  esteem  any  peril  or  danger  to  save 
your  life,  we  intend  to  shew  you  the  best  way  and 
means  to  safety  as  we  may  possibly  do,  and  we  have 
long  thought  thereon.  Take  a  sharp  razor,  whetted 
upon  the  palm  of  your  hand  to  its  finest  edge,  and 
put  it  under  the  pillow  of  your  bed,  and  see  that  you 
have  ready  a  privy  burning  lamp  with  oil,  hid  under 
some  part  of  the  hanging  of  the  chamber ;  and  (finely 
dissimulating  all  the  matter)  when,  according  to  his 
custom,  he  cometh  to  bed  and  stretcheth  him  fully 
out  and  sleepeth  soundly,  breathing  deep,  arise  you 
secretly,  and  with  your  ban-  feet  treading a-tiptoe.  go 
and  take  your  lamp,  with  the  razor  lifted  high  in 
your  right  hand,  from  the  ward  of  its  hiding-place 
that  you  may  borrow  from  its  light  the  occasion  of  a 
bold  deed,  and  with  valiant  force  cut  off  the  head  of 
the  poisonous  serpent  at  the  knot  of  his  neck : 
wherein  we  will  aid  and  assist  you,  and  when  by  the 
death  of  him  you  shall  be  made  safe,  we  will  bring 
quickly  away  all  these  riches  and  marry  you,  that  are 
a  woman,  to  some  comely  man,  and  no  beast.'  After 
they  had  thus  inflamed  the  heart  of  their  sifter,  who 


sus  ardentis  deserentes  ipsae  protinus,  tanti  mali 
confinium  sibi  etiam  eximie  metuentes,  flatus  alitis  im- 
pulsu  solito  porrectae  super  scopulum,  illico  pernici  se 
fuga  proripiunt  statimque  conscensis  navibus  abeunt. 
"At  Psyche  relicta  sola,  nisi  quod  infestis  furiis 
agitata  sola  non  est,  aestu  pelagi  simile  maerendo 
fluctuat,  et  quamvis  statute  consilio  et  obstinato 
animo,  iam  tamen  facinori  manus  admovens  adhuc 
incerta  consilii  titubat  multisque  calamitatis  suae  dis- 
trahitur  afFectibus.  Festinat,  difFert ;  audet,  trepi- 
dat ;  diffidit,  irascitur ;  et,  quod  est  ultimum,  in 
eodem  corpore  odit  bestiam,  diligit  maritum.  Ves- 
pera  tamen  iam  noctem  trahente  praecipiti  festina- 
tione  nefarii  sceleris  instruit  apparatum  :  nox  aderat 
et  maritus  aderat  priusque  Veneris  proeliis  velitatus 
22  altum  soporem  descenderat.  Tune  Psyche,  et  cor- 
poris  et  animi  alioquin  infirma,  fati  tamen  saevitia 
subministrante  viribus  roboratur,  et  prolata  lucerna 
et  arrepta  novacula  sexum  audacia  mutatur.  Sed 
cum  primum  lumiiiis  oblatione  tori  secreta  clarue- 
runt,  videt  omnium  ferarum  mitissiraam  dulcissi- 
mamque  bestiam,  ipsum  ilium  Cupidinem  formosum 
deum  formose  cubantem,  cuius  aspectu  lucernae  quo- 
que  lumen  hilaratum  increbruit  et  acuminis  sacrilegi 
novaculam  paenitebat.  At  vero  Psyche  tanto  aspectu 
deterrita  et  impos  animi,  marcido  pallore  defecta 
tremensque  desedit  in  imos  poplites  et  ferrum  quaerit 
abscondere,  sed  in  suo  pectore  :  quod  profecto  fecis- 
setj  nisi  ferrum  timore  tanti  flagitii  manibus  teme- 


was  already  alight  (fearing  lest  some  danger  might 
happen  unto  them  by  reason  of  their  privity  in  so 
wicked  a  deed)  they  left  her  and  were  carried  by  the 
wind  Zephyrus  to  the  top  of  the  mountain,  and  so 
they  ran  away,  and  took  shipping. 

"When  Psyche  was  left  alone  (saving  that  she 
seemed  not  to  be  alone,  being  stirred  by  so  many 
furies)  she  was  in  a  tossing  mind,  like  the  waves  of 
the  sea,  and  although  her  will  was  obstinate  and 
fixed  to  put  in  execution  the  counsel  of  her  sisters, 
yet  when  she  was  now  ready  to  do  the  deed,  she  was 
in  doubtful  and  divers  opinions  touching  her  calamity. 
Sometimes  she  would,  sometimes  she  would  not, 
sometimes  she  is  bold,  sometimes  she  feareth,  some- 
times she  mistrusteth,  sometimes  she  is  moved,  and 
at  last  in  one  person  she  hateth  the  beast  and 
loveth  her  husband  ;  but  at  length  the  evening  came, 
when  she  made  preparation  for  her  wicked  intent. 
Then  was  it  night,  and  soon  after  her  husband  came, 
and  when  he  had  kissed  and  embraced  her  he  fell 
asleep  :  then  Psyche  (somewhat  feeble  in  body  and 
mind,  yet  strengthened  by  cruelty  of  fate)  received 
boldness  and  brought  forth  the  lamp,  and  took  the 
razor,  so  that  by  her  audacity  she  changed  herself  to 
masculine  kind.  But  when  she  took  the  lamp  and 
the  secret  parts  of  the  bed  were  made  light,  she  saw 
the  most  meek  and  sweetest  beast  of  all  beasts,  even 
fair  Cupid,  couched  fairly,  at  whose  sight  the  very 
lamp  increased  its  light  for  joy,  and  the  razor  turned 
its  edge.  But  when  Psyche  saw  so  glorious  a  body, 
she  greatly  feared,  and  amazed  in  mind,  with  a  pale 
countenance,  all  trembling,  fell  on  her  knees,  and 
thought  to  hide  the  razor,  yea  verily  in  her  own 
heart ;  which  she  had  undoubtedly  done,  had  it  not, 
through  fear  of  so  wicked  an  enterprise,  fallen  out  of 



rariis  delapsum  evolasset.  lamque  lassa,  salute  de- 
fecta  dum  saepius  divini  vultus  intuetur  pulchritu- 
dinem,  recreatur  animi :  videt  capitis  aurei  genialem 
caesariem  ambrosia  temulentam,  cervices  lacteas 
genasque  purpureas  pererrantes  crinium  globos  de- 
coriter  impeditos,  alios  antependulos,  alios  retropen- 
dulos,  quorum  splendore  nimio  fulgurante  iam  et 
ipsum  lumen  lucernae  vacillabat :  per  humeros  vola- 
talis  dei  pinnae  roscidae  micanti  flore  candicant  et 
quamvis  alis  quiescentibus  extimae  plumulae  tenellae 
ac  delicatae  tremule  resultantes  inquieta  lasciviunt : 
ceterum  corpus  glabellum  atque  luculentum  et  quale 
peperisse  Venevem  non  paeniteret.  Ante  lectuli  pedes 
iacebat  arcus  et  pharetra  et  sagittae,  magni  dei  pro- 
23  pitia  tela ;  quae  dum  insatiabili  animo  Psyche,  satis 
et  curiosa^  rimatur  atque  pertrectat  et  mariti  sui 
miratur  arma,  depromit  unam  de  pharetra  sagittam  et 
puncto  pollicis  extremam  aciem  periclitabunda  tre- 
rnentis  etiam  nunc  articuli  nisu  fortiore  pupugit 
altius,  ut  per  summam  cutem  roraverint  parvulae 
sanguinis  rosei  guttae  :  sic  ignara  Psyche  sponte  in 
Amoris  incidit  amorem.  Tune  magis  magisque  cupi- 
dine  flagrans  Cupidiiiis,  prona  in  eum  efflictim  inhians, 
patulis  ac  petulantibus  saviis  festinanter  ingestis,  de 
somni  mensura  metuebat. 

"  Sed  dum  bono  tanto  percita  saucia  mente  fluctuat, 
lucerna  illa^  sive  perfidia  pessima  sive  invidia  noxia 
sive  quod  tale  corpus  contingere  et  quasi  basiare  et 
ipsa  gestiebat,  evomuit  de  summa  luminis  sui  stillam 
ferventis  olei  super  humerum  dei  dexterum :  hem 
audax  ettemeraria  lucerna  et  amoris  vile  ministerium, 
ipsum  ignis  totius  deum  aduris,  cum  te,  scilicet 


her  rash  and  hasty  hands.  And  now  she  was  faint 
and  had  lost  her  strength,  but  when  she  saw  and 
beheld  the  beauty  of  his  divine  visage,  she  was  well 
recreated  in  her  mind  ;  she  saw  his  hairs  of  gold, 
that  were  drenched  with  ambrosia  and  yielded  out  a 
sweet  savour  thereof;  his  neck  more  white  than 
milk  ;  his  ruddy  cheeks  upon  which  his  hair  hanged 
comely  behind  and  before,  the  brightness  whereof 
did  darken  the  light  of  the  lamp  ;  the  tender  plume 
feathers  of  that  flying  god  dispersed  upon  his 
shoulders  with  shining  gleam,  and  though  his  wings 
were  at  rest,  the  tender  down  of  their  edges 
trembling  hither  and  thither,  and  the  other  parts  of 
his  body  so  smooth  and  soft  that  it  could  not  repent 
Venus  to  bear  such  a  child.  At  the  bed's  feet  lay 
his  bow,  quiver  and  arrows  that  be  the  gentle  weapons 
of  so  great  a  god  :  which  when  Psyche  did  curiously 
behold,  and  marvelling  at  the  weapons  of  her  hus- 
band took  one  of  the  arrows  out  of  the  quiver,  and 
trying  the  sharpness  thereof  with  her  finger,  she 
pricked  herself  withal :  wherewith  she  was  so 
grievously  wounded  that  some  little  drops  of  blood 
followed,  and  thereby  of  her  own  accord  she  fell  in 
love  with  Love.  Then  more  and  more  broiling  in 
the  love  of  Cupid,  she  embraced  him  and  kissed  him 
a  thousand  times,  fearing  the  measure  of  his  sleep. 

"  But  alas,  while  she  was  in  this  great  joy,  and  her 
spirit  languished  and  wavered,  whether  it  were  for 
foul  envy,  or  for  desire  to  touch  this  amiable  body 
likewise,  there  fell  out  a  drop  of  burning  oil  from 
the  lamp  upon  the  right  shoulder  of  the  god.  O 
rash  and  bold  lamp,  the  vile  ministry  of  love,  how 
darest  thou  be  so  bold  as  to  burn  the  god  of  all  fire, 
when  surely  some  lover  invented  thee,  to  the  intent 
that  he  might  with  more  joy  pass  the  nights  in 



amator  aliquis,  ut  diutius  cupitis  etiam  nocte  potiretur, 
primus  invenerit  !  Sic  inustus  exiluit  deus  visaque 
detectae  fidei  colluvie  prorsus  ex  osculis  et  manibus 

24-  infelicissimae  coniugis  tacitus  avolavit :  at  Psyche 
statim  resurgentis  eius  crure  dextero  raanibus  am- 
babus  arrepto,  sublimis  evectionis  appendix  miseranda 
et  per  nubilas  plagas  penduli  corrntatus  extrema 
consequia  tandem  fessa  delabitur  solo.  Nee  deus 
amator  humi  iacentem  deserens,  involavit  proximam 
cupressum  deque  eius  alto  cacumine  sic  earn  graviter 
commotus  affatur :  'Ego  quidem,  simplicissima  Psyche, 
parentis  meae  Veneris  praceptorum  immemor,  quae 
te  miseri  extremique  hominis  devinctam  cupidine 
infimo  matrimonio  addici  iusserat,  ipse  potius  amator 
advolavi  tibi.  Sed  hoc  feci  leviter,  scio,  et  prae- 
clarus  ille  Sagittarius  ipse  me  telo  meo  percussi  teque 
coniugem  meam  feci,  ut  bestia  scilicet  tibi  viderer  et 
ferro  caput  excideres  meum,  quod  istos  amatores  tuos 
oculos  gerit !  Haec  tibi  semper  cavenda  censebam, 
haec  benivole  remonebam.  Sed  illae  quidem  con- 
siliatrices  egregiae  tuae  tarn  perniciosi  magisterii 
dabunt  actutum  mihi  poenas :  te  vero  tantum  fuga 
mea  punivero '  ;  et  cum  termino  sermonis  pinnis  in 
altum  se  proripuit. 

25  "  Psyche  vero  humi  prostrata  et  quantum  visu 
poterat  volatus  mariti  prospiciens  extremis  affligebat 
lamentationibus  animum.  Sed  ubi  remigio  plumae 
raptum  maritum  proceritas  spatii  fecerat  alienum,  per 
proximi  fluminis  marginem  praecipitem  sese  dedit : 


pleasure .?  The  god  being  burned  in  this  sort,  and 
perceiving  that  promise  and  faith  was  broken,  he 
fled  away  without  utterance  of  any  word  from  the 
kisses  and  hands  of  his  most  unhappy  wife.  But 
Psyche  fortuned  to  catch  him  as  he  was  rising  by 
the  right  thigh  with  both  hands,  and  held  him  fast 
as  he  flew  about  in  the  air,  hanging  to  him  (poor 
wretch)  through  his  cloudy  journey,  until  such  time 
that,  constrained  by  weariness,  she  let  go  and  fell 
down  upon  the  ground :  but  Cupid  left  her  not 
altogether,  but  followed  her  down  and  lighted  upon 
the  top  of  a  cypress-tree,  and  angrily  spake  unto  her 
in  this  manner :  '  O  simple  Psyche,  consider  with 
thyself,  how  I  (little  regarding  the  commandment  of 
my  mother,  who  willed  me  that  thou  shouldest  be 
married  to  a  man  of  base  and  miserable  condition) 
did  come  myself  from  heaven  to  love  thee.  This 
have  I  very  wantonly  done,  I  know  (and  I  have 
wounded  mine  own  body  with  my  proper  weapon) 
to  have  thee  to  my  spouse,  and  did  I  seem  a  beast 
unto  thee,  that  thou  shouldest  go  about  to  cut  oft' 
my  head  with  a  razor,  yea  this  head  with  its  eyes 
that  love  thee  so  well  ?  Did  not  I  always  give  thee 
in  charge  against  this  danger?  Did  not  I  gently 
will  thee  to  beware  ?  But  those  cursed  aiders  and 
counsellors  of  thine  shall  be  worthily  rewarded  for 
their  pains.  As  for  thee,  thou  shalt  be  sufficiently 
punished  by  my  absence.'  And  when  he  had  spoken 
these  words  he  took  his  flight  into  the  air. 

"  Then  Psyche  fell  flat  on  the  ground,  and  as  long 
as  she  might  see  her  husband,  she  cast  her  eyes  after 
him  into  the  air,  weeping  and  lamenting  piteously  : 
but  when  he  was  flown  clean  away  out  of  her  sight, 
she  threw  herself  into  the  next  running  river,  for 
the  great  anguish  and  dolour  that  she  was  in,  for 



sed  mitis  fluvius  in  honorem  del  scilicet,  qui  et  ipsas 
aquas  urere  consuevit,  metuens  sibi  confestim  earn 
innoxio  volumine  super  ripam  florentem  herbis  ex- 
posuit.  Tune  forte  Pan  deus  rusticus  iuxta  super- 
cilium  amnis  sedebat,  complexus  Echo  montanam 
deam  eamque  voculas  omnimodas  edocens  recinere ; 
proxime  ripam  vago  pastu  lasciviunt,  comam  fluvii 
tondentes,  capellae.  Hircuosus  deus  sauciam  Psy- 
chen  atque  defectam,  utcumque  casus  eius  non  inscius, 
clementer  ad  se  vocatam  sic  permulcet  verbis  lenien- 
tibus :  '  Puella  scitula,  sum  quidem  rusticanus  et 
upilio,  sed  senectutis  prolixae  beneficio  multis  ex- 
perimentis  instructus.  Verum  si  recte  coniecto,  quod 
profecto  prudentes  viri  divinationem  autumant,  ab 
isto  titubante  et  saepius  vacillante  vestigio  deque 
nimio  pallore  corporis  et  assiduo  suspiritu,  immo  et 
ipsis  marcentibus  oculis  tuis,  amore  nimio  laboras. 
Ergo  mihi  ausculta,  nee  te  rursus  praecipitio  vel  ullo 
mortis  accersitae  genere  perimas.  Luctum  desine  et 
pone  maerorem  precibusque  potius  Cupidinem  deorum 
maximum  percole,  et  utpote  adolescentem  delicatum 
luxuriosumque  blandis  obsequiis  promerere.' 
26  "  Sic  locuto  deo  pastore,  nulloque  sermone  reddito 
sed  adorato  tantum  numine  salutari,  Psyche  pergit 
ire.  Sed  cum  aliquam  multum  viae  laboranti  ves- 
tigio pererrasset,  inscio  quodam  tramite,  iam  die 
labente,  accedit  quandam  civitatem^  in  qua  regnum 
maritus  unius  sororis  eius  obtinebat.  Qua  re  cognita 
Psyche  nuntiari  praesentiam  suam  sorori  desiderat ; 


the  lack  of  her  husband ;  howbeit  the  gentle  water 
would  not  suffer  her  to  be  drowned,  but  took  pity 
upon  her,  in  the  honour  of  Cupid  which  accustomed 
to  broil  and  burn  the  very  river,  and  so  fearing  for 
himself  would  not  harm  her,  but  threw  her  upon  the 
bank  amongst  the  herbs.  Then  Pan  the  rustical  god 
was  sitting  on  the  river-side,  embracing  and  teaching 
the  goddess  Echo  of  the  mountains  to  tune  her  songs 
and  pipes,  by  whom  were  feeding  upon  the  grass  of 
the  margin  the  young  and  tender  goats ;  and  after 
that  this  goat-footed  god  perceived  poor  Psyche  in 
so  sorrowful  case,  not  ignorant  (I  know  not  by  what 
means)  of  her  miserable  estate,  he  called  her  gently 
beside  him  and  endeavoured  to  pacify  her  in  this 
sort :  '  O  fair  maid,  I  am  a  rustic  and  rude  herds- 
man, howbeit  (by  reason  of  my  old  age)  expert  in 
many  things  ;  tor  as  far  as  I  can  learn  by  conjecture, 
which  (according  as  wise  men  do  term)  is  called 
divination,  I  perceive  by  your  uncertain  and  trem- 
bling gait,  your  pale  hue,  your  sobbing  sighs,  aye 
and  your  watery  eyes,  that  you  are  greatly  in  love. 
Wherefore,  hearken  to  me,  and  go  not  about  to  slay 
yourself,  nor  weep  not  at  all,  but  rather  adore  and 
worship  the  great  god  Cupid,  and  win  him  unto  you, 
that  is  a  delicate  and  wanton  youth,  by  your  gentle 
promise  of  service.' 

"  When  the  god  of  shepherds  had  spoken  these 
words,  she  gave  no  answer,  but  made  reverence  unto 
him  as  to  a  god,  and  so  departed  :  and  after  that  she 
had  gone  more  than  a  little  way  with  weary  feet,  she 
fortuned  unawares  to  take  a  certain  path,  and  towards 
evening  to  come  to  a  city  where  the  husband  of  one  of 
her  sisters  did  reign  ;  which  when  Psyche  did  under- 
stand, she  caused  that  her  sister  had  knowledge  of 
her  coming.  And  so  they  met  together,  and  aftt 


mox  inducta,  mutuis  amplexibus  alternae  salutationis 
expletis,  percontanti  causas  adventus  sui  sic  incipit : 
'*  Meministi  consilium  vestrum,  scilicet  quo  mihi  sua- 
sistis  ut  bestiam,  quae  mariti  mentito  nomine  mecum 
quiescebat,  prius  quam  ingluvie  voraci  me  misellam 
hauriret,  ancipiti  novacula  peremerem  ?  Sed  cum 
primum,  ut  aeque  placuerat,  conscio  lumine  vultus 
eius  aspexi,  video  mirum  divinumque  prorsus  specta- 
culum  ;  ipsum  ilium  deae  Veneris  filium,  ipsum  in- 
.quam  Cupidinem  leni  quiete  sopitum.  Ac  dum  tanti 
boni  spectaculo  percita  et  nimia  voluptatis  copia  tur- 
bata  fruendi  laborarem  inopia,  casu  scilicet  pessimo 
lucerna  fervens  oleum  rebullivit  in  eius  humerum. 
Quo  dolore  statim  somno  recussus,  ubi  me  ferro  et 
igni  conspexit  armatam,  "  Tu  quidem  "  inquit  "Ob 
istud  tarn  dirum  facinus  confestim  toro  meo  divorte 
tibique  res  tuas  habeto,  ego  vero  sororem  tuam  "- 
et  nomen  quo  tu  censeris  aiebat — "  lam  mihi  con- 
festim farreatis  nuptiis  coniugabo/'  et  statim  Zephyro 
praecipit  ultra  terminos  me  dornus  eius  efflaret.' 
27  "  Necdum  sermonem  Psyche  finierat ;  ilia  vesanae 
libidinis  et  invidiae  noxiae  stimulis  agitata,  e  re  con- 
cinnato  mendacio  fallens  maritum,  quasi  de  morte 
parentum  aliquid  comperisset,  statim  navem  ascendit 
et  ad  ilium  scopulum  protinus  pergit,  et  quam  vis  alio 
flante  vento,  caeca  spe  tamen  inhians,  '  Accipe  me ' 
dicens  '  Cupido,  dignam  te  coniugem  et  tu,  Zephyre, 


great  embracing  and  salutation  the  sister  of  Psyche 
demanded  the  cause  of  her  travel  thither.  '  Marry/ 
quoth  she,  '  Do  not  you  remember  the  counsel  that 
you  gave  me,  whereby  you  would  that  I  should  kill 
with  a  razor  the  beast,who  under  colour  of  my  husband 
did  lie  with  me  every  night,  before  he  should  utterly 
devour  miserable  me  ?  You  shall  understand  that 
as  soon  as,  by  thy  further  advice,  I  brought  forth 
the  lamp  to  see  and  behold  his  shape,  I  perceived  a 
wonderful  and  even  a  divine  sight ;  for  it  was  the 
son  of  Venus,  even  Cupid  himself,  that  lay  softly 
asleep.  Then  I,  being  stricken  with  the  sight  of 
so  great  pleasure,  and  distraught  by  exceeding 
great  joy,  could  not  thoroughly  assuage  my  delight, 
but,  alas  (by  evil  chance)  the  boiling  oil  of  the  lamp 
fortuned  to  fall  on  his  shoulder,  which  caused  him  to 
awake ;  and  he,  aroused  by  the  pain  thereof,  seeing 
me  armed  with  fire  and  weapon,  began  to  say  :  "  How 
darest  thou  be  so  bold  as  to  do  so  great  a  mischief? 
Depart  from  me,  and  take  such  things  as  thou  diddest 
bring:  1  for  I  will  have  thy  sister  "  (and  named  you) 
"  to  my  wife,  and  she  shall  be  joined  in  true  wedlock 
with  me  "  ;  and  by  and  by  he  commanded  Zephyrus 
to  carry  me  away  from  the  bounds  of  his  house.' 

"Psyche  had  scantly  finished  her  tale,  but  her 
sister  (pierced  with  the  prick  of  carnal  desire  and 
wicked  envy)  ran  home,  and  feigning  to  her  husband 
with  a  cunningly  made  lie  that  she  had  heard  some- 
what of  the  death  of  her  parents,  took  shipping  and 
came  to  the  mountain.  And  although  there  blew  a 
contrary  wind,  yet  being  brought  in  a  vain  hope,  she 
cried  :  '  O  Cupid,  take  me  a  more  worthy  wife,  and 

1  The  Roman  formula  of  divorce ;  and  Cupid  was  to  re-marry 
the  sister  by  confarreatio,  the  solemn  and  ceremonial  tie 
confined  to  patricians  and  priests. 



suscipe  dominam  ! '  saltu  se  maximo  praecipitem  dedit. 
Nee  tamen  ad  ilium  locum  vel  saltern  mortua  perve- 
nire  potuit :  nam  per  saxa  cautium  membris  iactatis 
atque  dissipatis  et  proinde  ut  merebatur  laceratis, 
visceribus  suis  alitibus  bestiisque  obvium  ferens  pabu- 
lum interiit.  Nee  vindictae  sequentis  poena  tardavit: 
nam  Psyche  rursus  errabundo  gradu  pervenit  ad  civi- 
tatem  aliam,  in  qua  pari  modo  soror  morabatur  alia. 
Nee  setius  et  ipsa  fallacie  germanitatis  inducta,  et  in 
sororis  sceleratas  nuptias  aemula,  festinavit  ad  scopu- 
lum  inque  simile  mortis  exitium  cecidit. 
28  "  Interim,  dum  Psyche  quaestioni  Cupidinis  intenta 
populos  circumibat,  ille  vulnere  lucernae  dolens  in 
ipso  thalamo  matris  iacens  ingemebat.  Tune  avis 
peralba  ilia  gavia,  quae  super  fluctus  marinos  pinnis 
natat,  demergit  sese  propere  ad  Oceani  profundum 
gremium.  Ibi  cominodum  Venerem  lavantem  natan- 
temque  propter  assistens,  indicat  adustum  filium 
eius,  gravi  vulneris  dolore  maerentem,  dubium 
salutis  iacere,  iamque  per  cunctorum  ora  populorum 
rumoribus  conviciisque  variis  omnem  Veneris  familiam 
male  audire,  '  quod  ille  quidem  montano  scortatu, 
tu  vero  marino  natatu  secesseritis  ac  per  hoc  non 
voluptas  ulla,  non  gratia,  non  lepos,  sed  incompta  et 
agrestia  et  horrida  cuncta  sint,  non  nuptiae  con- 
iugales,  non  amicitiae  sociales,  non  liberum  caritates, 
sed  enormis  eluvies  1  et  squalentium  foederum  insuave 
fastidium.'  Haee  ilia  verbosa  et  satis  curiosa  avis  in 

1  TheMSS  seem  to  give  gluvies  or  inyluvies.    The  suggestiou 
of  eluvies  is  due  to  Beroaldus. 



thou,  Zephyrus,  bear  down  thy  mistress/  and  so  she 
cast  herself  down  from  the  mountain  But  she  fell 
not  into  the  valley  neither  alive  nor  dead,  for  all  the 
members  and  parts  of  her  body  were  torn  amongst 
the  rocks,,  whereby  she  was  made  a  prey  to  the  birds 
and  wild  beasts,  as  she  worthily  deserved,  and  so  she 
perished.  Neither  was  the  vengeance  of  the  other 
delayed  :  .for  Psyche,  travelling  with  wandering  feet, 
fortuned  to  come  to  another  city,where  her  other  sister 
did  dwell;  to  whom  when  she  had  declared  all  such 
things  as  she  told  to  her  first  sister,  she  also  was 
caught  in  the  snare,  and  being  very  jealous  of  her 
marriage,  ran  likewise  unto  the  rock,  and  was  slain  in 
like  sort. 

"  In  the  meantime,  Psyche  travelled  about  in  the 
country  to  seek  her  husband  Cupid,  but  he  was  gotten 
into  his  mother's  chamber,  and  there  bewailed  the 
sorrowful  wound  which  he  caught  by  the  oil  of  the 
burning  lamp.  Then  the  white  bird  the  gull,  which 
swimmeth  with  his  wings  over  the  waves  of  the  water, 
flew  down  to  the  Ocean  sea,  where  she  found  Venus 
washing  and  bathing  herself :  to  whom  she  declared 
her  son  was  burned  and  suffering  from  a  grievous 
wound  and  in  danger  of  death,  and  moreover  that  it 
was  a  common  report  in  the  mouth  of  every  person 
to  speak  evil  of  all  the  family  of  Venus  ;  '  Thy  son,' 
quoth  she,  '  Doth  nothing  but  haunt  harlots  in  the 
mountain,  and  thou  thyself  dost  use  to  riot  on  the 
sea,  whereby  they  say  there  is  now  nothing  any  more 
gracious,  nothing  pleasant,  nothing  gentle,  but  all  is 
become  uncivil,  monstrous,  and  horrible ;  moreover, 
there  are  no  more  loving  marriages,  nor  friendships 
of  amity,  nor  loving  of  children,  but  all  is  disorderly, 
and  there  is  a  very  bitter  hatred  of  weddings  as  base 
things.'  This  the  wordy  and  curious  gull  did  clatter 



auribus  Veneris,  filii  lacerans  existimationem,  gannie- 
bat :  at  Venus  irata  solidum  exclamat  repente  :  "  Ergo 
iam  ille  bonus  filius  nieus  habet  amicam  aliquam ! 
Prome  agedum,  quae  sola  mihi  servis  amanter,  nomen 
eius  quae  puerum  ingenuum  et  investem  sollicitavit, 
sive  ilia  de  Nympharum  populo  seu  de  Horarum 
numero  seu  de  Musarum  choro  vel  de  mearum  Gra- 
tiarum  ministerio.'  v  Nee  loquax  ilia  conticuit  avis, 
sed  ;  '  Nescio  '  inquit,  '  Domina ;  puto  puellam  ilium 1 
— si  probe  memini,  Psyches  nomine  dicitur — efflicte 
cupere.'  Tune  indignata  Venus  exclamavit  vel 
maxime  : '  Psychen  ille  meae  formae  succubam,  mei 
nominis  aemulam  si  vere  diligit,  nimirum  illud  incre- 
mentum  lenam  me  putavit,  cuius  monstratu  puellam 
illam  cognosceret.' 

29  "  Haec  quiritans  properiter  emergit  e  mari,  suum- 
que  protinus  aureum  thalamum  petit,  et  reperto; 
sicut  audierat,  aegroto  puero  iam  inde  a  foribus 
quam  maxine  boans,  '  Honesta '  inquit  '  Haec  et 
natalibus  nostris  bonaeque  tuae  frugi  congruentia, 
ut  primum  quidem  tuae  parentis,  immo  dominae 
praecepta  calcares,  nee  sordidis  amoribus  inimicam 
meam  cruciares,  verum  etiam  hoc  aetatis  puer  tuis 
licentiosis  et  immaturis  iungeres  amplexibus,  ut  ego 
nurum  scilicet  tolerarem  inimicam !  Sed  utique 
praesumis,  nugo  et  corruptor  et  inamabilis,  te  solum 

i  I  do  not  feel  absolutely  certain  that  grammar  requires  the 
subject  of  cupere  to  be  expressed;  but  I  adopt  Kossbach's 
suggestion  of  the  insertion  of  ilium,  which  is  quite  likely  to  have 
dropped  out  owing  to  its  resemblance  to  the  last  part  of  the 
preceding  word. 



in  the  ears  of  Venus,  reprehending  her  son.  But 
Venus  began  to  be  very  angry,  and  said :  '  What, 
hath  my  son  gotten  any  love  ?  I  pray  thee,  gentle 
bird,  that  dost  alone  serve  me  so  faithfully,  tell  me 
what  she  is  and  what  is  her  name,  that  hath  troubled 
my  simple  and  beardless  l  son  in  such  sort,  whether 
she  be  any  of  the  tribe  of  the  Nymphs,  of  the  number 
of  the  Seasons,  of  the  company  of  the  Muses,  or  of  the 
ministry  of  my  Graces  ?  '  To  whom  the  bird  answered 
that  could  never  be  silent :  '  Madam,  I  know  not 
what  she  is  ;  but  this  I  know,  that  he  loveth  her 
greatly,  and  that  she  is  called  Psyche.'  Then  Venus 
with  indignation  cried  out :  '  What,  is  it  she  ?  The 
usurper  of  my  beauty,  the  vicar  of  my  name  ?  And 
this  is  more  and  worse  ;  will  the  brat  think  that  I  am 
a  bawd,  by  whose  shewing  he  fell  acquainted  with 
the  maid  ?  ' 

"Thus  she  complained,  and  immediately  departed 
and  went  to  her  golden  chamber,  where  she  found 
her  son  wounded,  as  it  was  told  unto  her ;  whom 
when  she  beheld  she  stood  at  the  door  and  cried  out 
very  loudly  in  this  sort:  'Is  this  an  honest  thing? 
Is  this  honourable  to  thy  parents  and  to  thine  own 
good  name  ?  Is  this  reason  that  thou  hast  first  vio- 
lated and  broken  the  commandment  of  thy  mother 
and  sovereign  mistress  ?  And  whereas  thou  shouldest 
have  vexed  my  enemy  with  a  loathsome  and  base 
love,  thou  hast  done  contrary :  for  (being  but  of 
tender  and  unripe  years)  thou  hast  with  too  licen- 
tious appetite  embraced  her,  that  my  most  mortal 
foe  shall  be  made  a  daughter  unto  me.  Thou  pre- 
sumest  and  thinkest  (thou  trifling  boy,  thou  varlet, 
and  without  all  love)  that  thou  art  alone  my  true 
child,  and  that  I  am  not  able  by  reason  of  mine 
1  Lit.  "  not  yet  clothed  as  a  man." 



generosum,  nee  me  iam  per  aetatem  posse  concipere  1 
velim  ergo  scias  multo  te  meliorem  filium  alium 
genituram ;  immo,  ut  contumeliam  magis  sentias, 
aliquem  de  meis  adoptaturam  vernulis  eique  dona- 
turam  istas  pinnas  et  flammas  et  arcum  et  ipsas 
sagittas  et  omnem  meam  supellectilem,,  quam  tibi  non 
ad  hos  usus  dederam  :  nee  enim  de  patris  tui  bonis  ad 
30  instructionem  istam  quicquam  concessum  est.  Sed 
male  prima  pueritia  inductus  es  et  acutas  manus 
habes  et  maiores  tuos  irreverenter  pulsasti  totiens  et 
ipsam  matrem  tuam,  me  inquam  ipsam  parricida 
denudas  cotidie  et  percussisti  saepius  et  quasi 
viduam  utique  contemnis,  nee  vitricum  tuum  fortissi- 
mum  ilium  maximumque  bellatorem  metuis.  Quidni  ? 
Cui  saepius  in  angorem  mei  paelicatus  puellas  pro- 
pinare  consuesti.  Sed  iam  faxo  te  lusus  huius  pae- 
niteat  et  sentias  acidas  et  amaras  istas  nuptias.  Sed 
nunc  irrisui  babita  quid  agam  ?  Quo  me  conferam  ? 
Quibus  niodis  stelionem  istum  cohibeam  ?  Petamne 
auxilium  ab  inimica  mea  Sobrietate,  quam  propter 
huius  ipsius  luxuriam  offendi  saepius?  At  rusticae 
squalentisque  feminae  colloquium  prorsus  horresco. 
Nee  tamen  vindictae  solacium  undeunde  spernendum 
est :  ilia  mihi  prorsus  adhibenda  est  nee  ulla  alia, 
quae  castiget  asperrime  nugonem  istum,  pharetram 
explicet  et  sagittas  dearmet,  arcum  enodet,  taedam 
deflammet,  immo  et  ipsum  corpus  eius  acrioribus 
remediis  coereeat.  Tune  iniuriae  meae  litatum  credi- 
derim,  cum  eius  comas,  quas  istis  manibus  meis 


age  to  have  another  son  ;  but  this  I  could  do,  and 
thou  shouldest  well  understand  that  I  would  bear 
a  more  worthier  than  thou:  but  to  work  thee  a 
greater  despite,  I  do  determine  to  adopt  one  of  my 
servants,  and  to  give  him  these  wings,  this  fire,  this 
bow  and-these  arrows,  and  all  other  furniture  which 
I  gave  to  thee,  though  not  for  this  purpose ;  for  of 
all  this  nothing  came  to  thee  from  thy  father  to  thy 
furnishment.  But  first  thou  hast  been  evil  brought 
up  and  instructed  in  thy  youth  :  thou  hast  thy  hands 
ready  and  sharp  :  thou  hast  often  most  rudely  struck 
and  beaten  thy  ancients,  and  especially  thy  own 
mother,  myself  I  say,  thou  hast  robbed  me  daily, 
thou  very  parricide,  and  hast  pierced  me  with  thy 
darts,  thou  contemnest  me  as  a  widow,  neither  dost 
thou  regard  thy  valiant  and  invincible  stepfather, 
but  to  anger  me  more  thou  settest  him  after  wenches 
that  I  may  be  jealous  :  but  I  will  cause  that  thou 
shalt  shortly  repent  thee  of  this  sport,  and  that  this 
marriage  shall  be  bitter  to  thee  and  dearly  bought. 
To  what  a  public  scorn  am  I  now  driven  ?  What 
shall  1  do?  Whither  shall  I  go?  How  shall  I 
repress  this  beast  ?  Shall  I  ask  aid  of  mine  enemy 
Sobriety,  whom  I  have  often  offended  because  of 
thy  wantonness  ?  But  I  hate  to  seek  for  counsel 
from  so  poor  and  rustical  a  woman.  No,  no,  how- 
beit  I  will  not  cease  from  my  vengonce,  whence- 
soever  it  cometh ;  to  her  must  I  have  recourse  for 
help,  and  to  none  other  (I  mean  to  Sobriety)  who  may 
correct  sharply  this  trifler,  take  away  his  quiver, 
deprive  him  of  his  arrows,  unbend  his  bow,  quench 
his  fire,  and  subdue  his  body  with  punishment  still 
more  bitter  ;  and  when  that  she  hath  razed  and  cut  off 
this  his  hair,  which  I  have  dressed  with  mine  own 
hands  and  made  to  glitter  like  gold,  and  when 

2  J  •> 


subinde  aureo  nitore  perstrinxi,  deraserit ;  pinnas, 
quas  meo  gremio  uectarei  fontis  infeci,  praetoton- 

31  "  Sic  eflfata  foras  sese  proripit  infesta  et  sto- 
machata  biles  Venerias.  Sed  earn  protinus  Ceres  et 
luno  continuantur  visamque  vultu  tumido  quaesiere 
cur  truci  supercilio  tantam  venustatem  micantium 
oculorum  coerceret.  At  ilia  ( Opportune '  inquit 
'  Ardenti  prorsus  isto  meo  pectori  violentiam  scilicet 
perpetraturae  venitis.  Sed  totis,  oro,  vestris  viribus 
Psychen  illam  fugitivam  volaticam  mihi  requirite. 
Nee  enim  vos  utique  domus  meae  famosa  fabula  et 
non  dicendi  filii  mei  facta  latuerunt.'  Tune  illae  non1 
ignarae,  quae  gesta  sunt,  palpare  Veneris  iram  sae- 
vientem  sic  adortae :  '  Quid  tale,  domina,  deliquit 
tuus  filius  ut  animo  pervicaci  voluptates  illius  im- 
pugnes,  et  quam  ille  diligit  tu  quoque  perdere  ges- 
tias  ?  Quod  autern,  oramus,  isti  crimen  si  puellae 
lepidae  libenter  arrisit  ?  An  ignoras  eum  masculum 
et  iuvenem  esse,  vel  certe  iam  quot  sit  annorura  oblita 
es  ?  An  quod  aetatem  portat  bellule,  puer  tibi 
semper  videtur  ?  Mater  autem  tu  et  praeterea  cor- 
data  mulier  filii  tui  lusus  semper  explorabis  curiose, 
et  in  eo  luxuriem  culpabis  et  amores  revinces  et  tnas 

*  The  goddesses  did  know  what  had  been  going  on,  so  that 
it  is  necessary,  as  Beroaldus  saw,  either  to  insert  non  before 
ignarae,  or  to  read  gnarae. 



she  hath  clipped  his  wings  which  I  myself  have  dyed 
with  the  immortal  fountain  of  my  breast,  then  shall 
I  think  to  have  sufficiently  revenged  myself  for  the 
injury  which  he  hath  done.' 

"  When  she  had  spoken  these  words  she  departed 
in  a  great  rage  out  of  her  chamber  full  of  the  bitter- 
ness of  very  Venus  ;  and  immediately  as  she  was  going 
away,  came  Juno  and  Ceres,  and  seeing  her  angry 
countenance,  they  demanded  the  cause  of  her  anger, 
and  why  with  so  gloomy  a  frown  she  had  dimmed 
the  glory  of  her  shining  eyes.  Then  Venus  made 
answer :  '  Verily  you  are  come  in  good  time  to  carry 
into  effect  the  purpose  of  my  furious  heart;  but  I 
pray  you  with  all  diligence  to  seek  out  one  whose 
name  is  Psyche,  who  is  a  vagabond,  and  runneth 
about  the  countries,  and  I  think  you  are  not  ignorant 
of  the  bruit  of  my  son  Cupid,  and  of  his  demeanour, 
which  I  am  ashamed  to  declare.'  Then  they  under- 
standing and  knowing  the  whole  matter,  endeavoured 
to  mitigate  the  ire  of  Venus  in  this  sort :  'What  is  the 
cause,  madam,  or  how  hath  your  son  so  offended  that 
you  should  so  greatly  accuse  his  love,  and  blame  him 
by  reason  that  he  is  amorous  ?  And  why  should  you 
seek  the  death  of  her  whom  he  doth  fancy  ?  What 
is  his  fault,  we  pray,  if  he  have  accorded  to  the 
mind  of  a  fair  maiden  ?  What,  do  not  you  know 
that  he  is  a  man  and  a  young  man  ?  Or  have  you 
forgotten  of  what  years  he  is?  Doth  he  seem 
always  to  you  to  be  a  child  because  he  beareth  well 
his  age  ?  You  are  his  mother  and  a  kind  and  under- 
standing woman  ;  will  you  continually  search  out  his 
dalliance?  Will  you  blame  his  luxury?  .Will  you 
bridle  his'love  ?  And  will  you  reprehend  your  own  art 
and  delights  in  your  lovely  son  ?  What  god  or  man  is 
he,  that  can  endure  that  you  should  sow  or  disperse 



artes  tuasque  delicias  in  formoso  filio  reprehendes? 
Quis  autem  te  deum,  quis  hominum  patietur  passim 
cupidines  populis  disseminantem,  cum  tuae  domus 
amoves  amai'e  coerceas  et  vitiorum  muliebrium 
publicam  praeclutlas  officinam  ? '  Sic  illae  metu 
sagittarum  patrocinio  gratioso  Cupidini  quamvis  ab- 
senti  blandiebantur.  Sed  Venus  indignata  ridicule 
tractari  suas  iniurias  praeversis  illis  alterorsus  concito 
gradu  pelago  viam  capessit. 



your  seed  of  love  in  every  place,  and  at  the  same  time 
make  a  restraint  of  that  same  love  within  your  own 
doors,  and  entirely  close  and  shut  up  that  factory 
where  the  natural  faults  of  women  are  made  ? '  In 
this  sort  these  goddesses  endeavoured  to  excuse 
Cupid  with  all  their  power  (although  he  were 
absent)  for  fear  of  his  dart  and  shafts  of  love.  "  But 
Venus  would  in  no  wise  assuage  her  heat,  but 
(thinking  that  they  did  but  trifle  and  taunt  at  her 
injuries)  she  departed  from  them,  and  took  her 
voyage  again  towards  the  sea  in  all  haste. 


1  "  INTEREA  Psyche  variis  iactabatur  discursibus,  dies 
noctesque     mariti    vestigationibus    inquieta    animo, 
tanto  cupidior  iratum  licet;  si  non  uxoris  blanditiis 
lenire,     certe    servilibus     precibus     propitiare.       Et 
prospecto  tempi  o  quodam  in  ardui  mentis  vertice, 
'  Unde   autem '    inquit   '  Scio   an   istic    meus   degat 
dominus  ?  '    et  illico  dirigit  citatum  gradum,  quern 
defectum  prorsus  assiduis  laboribus  spes  incitabat  et 
votum.       lamque   naviter   emensis   celsioribus   iugis 
pulvinaribus    sese    proximam    intulit :    videt   spicas 
frumentarias  in  acervo  et  alias  flexiles  in  corona  et 
spicas    hordei    videt ;     erant    et    falces    et    operae 
messoriae  mundus  omniSj  sed  cuncta  passim  iacentia 
et   incuria   confusa  et,  ut  solet   aestu,   laborantium 
manibus    proiecta.       Haec    singula    Psyche    curiose 
dividit  et  discretim  remota  rite  componit,  rata  scilicet 
nullius  dei  fana  ac  caerimonias  neglegere  se  debere 
sed  omnium  benivolam  misericordiam  corrogare. 

2  "  Haec  earn   sollicite   seduloque   curantem    Ceres 
alma   deprehendit    et    longum    exclamat    protinus : 
'  Ain,  Psyche  miseranda  ?     Totum  per  orbem  Venus 
anxia  disquisitione  tuum  vestigium  furens  animi  re- 
quirit  teque  ad  extremum  supplicium  expetit  et  totis 


"  IN  the  mean  season  Psyche  hurled  herself  hither 
and  thither,  seeking  day  and  night  for  her  husband 
with  unquiet  mind,  eager  the  more  because  she 
thought  that  if  he  would  not  be  appeased  with  the 
sweet  flattery  of  his  wife,  yet  he  would  take  mercy 
upon  her  at  her  servile  and  continual  prayers.  And 
(espying  a  church  on  the  top  of  a  high  hill)  she  said : 
'  How  can  I  tell  whether  my  husband  and  master  be 
there  or  no  ?  '  Wherefore  she  went  swiftly  thither- 
ward, and  with  great  pain  and  travail,  yet  moved  by 
hope  and  desire,  after  that  she  had  stoutly  climbed 
to  the  top  of  the  mountain,  she  went  up  to  the  sacred 
couch,  where  behold,  she  espied  sheaves  of  corn  lying 
on  a  heap,  blades  twisted  into  garlands,  and  reeds  of 
barley  ;  moreover  she  saw  hooks,  scythes,  sickles,  and 
other  instruments  to  reap,  but  everything  lay  out  of 
order,  and  as  it  were  cast  down  carelessly  in  the 
summer  heat  by  the  hands  of  labourers  ;  which  when 
Psyche  saw,  she  gathered  up  and  put  everything 
duly  in  order,  thinking  that  she  would  not  despise  or 
contemn  the  temples  of  any  of  the  gods,  but  rather 
get  the  favour  and  benevolence  of  them  all. 

"  By  and  by  Lady  Ceres  came  in  and  beholding 
her  busy  and  curious  in  her  chapel,  cried  out  afar  off 
and  said :  '  O  Psyche,  needful  of  mercy,  Venus 
searcheth  anxiously  for  thy  steps  in  every  place, 
mad  at  heart  to  revenge  herself  and  to  punish  thee 



numinis  sui  viribus  ultionem  flagitat.  Tu  vero  rerum 
mearum  tutelam  nuiic  geris  et  aliud  quicquam  cogi- 
tas  nisi  de  tua  salute  ? '  Tune  Psyche  pedes  eius 
advoluta  et  uberi  fletu  rigans  deae  vestigia  humumque 
verrens  crinibus  suis,  multiiugis  precibus  editis,  veniam 
postulabat :  (  Per  ego  te  frugiferam  tuam  dexteram 
istam  deprecor,  per  laetificas  messium  caerimonias, 
per  tacita  secreta  cistarum  et  per  famulorum  tuorum 
draconum  pinnata  curricula  et  glebae  Siculae  sul- 
camina  et  currum  rapacem  et  terram  tenacem  et 
iuluminarum  Proserpinae  nuptiarum  demeacula  et 
luminosarum  filiae  inventionum  remeacula,  et  cetera 
quae  silentio  tegit  Eleusinis  Atticae  sacrarium, 
miserandae  Psyches  animae,  supplicis  tuae,  subsiste. 
Inter  istam  spicarum  congeriem  patere  vel  paueulos 
dies  delitescam,  quoad  deae  tantae  saeviens  ira  spatio 
temporis  mitigetur  vel  certe  meae  vires  diutino  labore 
fessae  quietis  intervallo  leniantur.'  Suscipit  Ceres : 
'  Tuis  quidem  lacrimosis  precibus  et  commoveor  et 
opitulari  cupio  ;  sed  cognatae  meae,  cum  qua  etiam 
foedus  antiquum  amicitiae  colo,  bonae  praeterea 
feminae,  malam  gratiam  subire  nequeo.  Decede 
itaque  de  istis  aedibus  protinus,  et  quod  a  me  retenta 
custoditaque  non  fueris,  option  consule.' 

"Contra   spem   suam   repulsa    Psyche    et    afflicta 
duplici  maestitia  iter  retrorsum  porrigens  inter  sub- 


grievously  with  all  the  power  of  her  godhead,  but 
hast  thou  more  mind  to  be  here  and  to  look  after  my 
affairs,  and  carest  for  nothing  less  than  thy  safety  ? ' 
Then  Psyche  fell  on  her  knees  before  her,  watering 
her  feet  with  her  tears,  wiping  the  ground  with  her 
hair,  and  with  great  weeping  and  many  supplications 
desired  pardon,  saying  :  '  O  great  and  holy  goddess, 
I  pray  thee  by  thy  plenteous  and  liberal  right  hand, 
by  thy  joyful  ceremonies  of  harvest,  by  the  secrets  of 
thy  baskets,  by  the  flying  chariots  of  the  dragons  thy 
servants,  by  the  tillage  of  the  ground  of  Sicily  which 
thou  hast  invented,  by  the  chariot  of  the  ravishing 
god/  by  the  earth  that  held  thy  daughter  fast,  by  the 
dark  descent  to  the  unillumined  marriage  of  Proser- 
pina, by  thy  diligent  inquisition  of  her  and  thy  bright 
return,  and  by  the  other  secrets  which  are  concealed 
within  the  temple  of  Eleusis  in  the  land  of  Athens, 
take  pity  on  me  thy  servant  Psyche,  and  help  my 
miserable  soul,  and  let  me  hide  myself  a  few  days 
amongst  these  sheaves  of  corn  until  the  ire  of  so  great 
a  goddess  be  past,  or  until  that  I  be  refreshed  of 
my  great  labour  and  travail.'  Then  answered  Ceres  : 
'  Verily,  Psyche,  I  am  greatly  moved  by  thy  prayers 
and  tears,  and  desire  with  all  my  heart  to  aid  thee, 
but  if  I  should  suffer  thee  to  be  hidden  here,  1  should 
incur  the  displeasure  of  my  good  cousin,  with  whom 
I  have  made  a  treaty  of  peace  and  an  ancient 
promise  of  amity  :  wherefore  I  advise  thee  to  depart 
from  this  my  temple,  and  take  it  in  good  part  in  that 
I  do  not  keep  and  guard  thee  as  a  prisoner  here.' 

"  Then  Psyche  driven  away,  contrary  to  her  hope, 
was  doubly  afflicted  with  sorrow,  and  so  she  returned 
back  ag-ain  :  and  behold,  she  perceived  afar  off  in  a 

l  Pluto,  who  carried  off  Proserpina  to  Hell  from  the  plains 
of  Henna,  in  Sicily. 



sitae  convallis  sublucidum  lucum  prospicit  fanum 
sollerti  fabrica  structural,  nee  ullam  vel  dubiam  spei 
melioris  viam  volens  omittere,  sed  adire  cuiuscumque 
dei  veniam,  sacratis  foribus  proximat.  Videt  dona 
pretiosa  ac  lacinias  auro  litteratas  ramis  arborum 
postibusque  suffixas,  quae  cum  gratia  facti  nomen 
deae  cui  fuerant  dicata  testabantur.  Tune  genu  nixa 
et  manibus  aram  tepentem  amplexa,  detersis  ante 
4  lacrimis,  sic  apprecatur  :  '  Magni  lovis  germana  et 
coniuga,  sive  tu  Sami,  quae  sola  partu  vagituque  et 
alimonia  tua  gloriatur,  tenes  vetusta  delubra ;  sive 
celsae  Carthaginis,  quae  te  virginem  vectura  leonis 
caelo  commeantem  percolit,  beatas  sedes  frequentas  ; 
sive  prope  ripas  Inachi,  qui  te  iam  nuptam  Tonantis 
et  reginam  dearum  memorat,  inclitis  Argivorum 
praesides  moenibus ;  quam  cunctus  oriens  Zygiam 
veneratur  et  omnis  occidens  Lucinam  appellat ;  sis 
meis  extremis  casibus  luno  Sospita,  meque  in  tantis 
exanclatis  laboribus  defessam  imminentis  periculi 
metu  libera.  Quod  sciam,  soles  praegnatibus  pericli- 
tantibus  ultro  subvenire.'  Ad  istum  modum  suppli- 
canti  statim  sese  luno  cum  totius  sui  numinis  augusta 
dignitate  praesentat,  et  protinus  '  Quam  vellem ' 


valley  a  temple  standing  within  a  glimmering  forest, 
fair  and  curiously  wrought ;  and  minding  to  overpass 
no  place  whither  better  hope  did  direct  her,  although 
it  might  be  uncertain,  and  to  the  intent  she  would 
desire  the  pardon  of  every  god,  she  approached  nigh 
to  the  sacred  doors.  There  she  saw  precious  riches 
and  vestments  engraven  with  letters  of  gold,  hanging 
upon  branches  of  trees  and  the  posts  of  the  temple, 
testifying  the  name  of  the  goddess  Juno  to  whom 
they  were  dedicated  and  the  reason  of  their  offering. 
Then  she  kneeled  down  upon  her  knees,  and  em- 
bracing the  altar  (which  was  yet  warm)  with  her 
hands,  and  wiping  her  tears  away,  began  to  pray  in 
this  sort :  '  O  dear  spouse  and  sister  of  the  great  god 
Jupiter,  which  art  adored  among  the  great  temples 
of  Samos  alone  made  famous  by  thy  birth,  and  infant 
crying,  and  nurture ;  or  worshipped  at  high  and 
happy  Carthage,  as  a  maid,  being  carried  through 
heaven  by  a  lion ;  or  whether  the  rivers  of  the  flood 
Inachus  do  celebrate  thee,  ruling  over  the  notable 
walls  of  Argos,  and  know  that  thou  art  the  wife  of 
the  great  thunderer  and  the  goddess  of  goddesses : 
all  the  east  part  of  the  world  hath  thee  in  veneration 
as  Zygia,  all  the  west  world  calleth  thee  Lucina :  I 
pray  thee  to  be  mine  advocate  and  Saviour  l  in  my 
tribulations ;  deliver  me  from  the  great  peril  which 
pursueth  me,  and  save  me  that  am  wearied  with  so 
long  labours  and  sorrow,  for  I  know  that  it  is  thou 
that  succourest  and  helpest  such  women  as  are  with 
child  and  in  danger.'  Then  Juno,  hearing  the  prayers 
of  Psyche,  appeared  unto  her  in  all  the  royal  dignity  of 
her  godhead,  saying :  '  Certes,  Psyche,  I  would  gladly 


Psyche  appeals  to  Juno  in  her  threefold  aspect :  Zygia,  as 
goddess  of  marriage;  Lucina,  as  goddess  of  childbirth  ;  and 
Sospita,  as  protectress  and  deliverer. 



inquit  '  Per  fidem  nutum  meum  precibus  tuis  aceom- 
modare !  Sed  contra  voluntatem  Veneris,  nurus 
meae,  quam  filiae  semper  dilexi  loco,  praestare  me 
pudor  non  sinit.  Tune  etiam  legibus,  quae  servos 
alienos  perfugas  invitis  dominis  vetant  suscipi,  prohi- 

5  "  Isto  quoque  fortunae  naufragio  Psyche  perterrita 
nee  indipisci  iam  maritum  volatilem  quiens,  tota  spe 
salutis  deposita,  sic  ipsa  suas  cogitationes  consuluit : 
'  Iam  quae  possunt  alia  meis  aerumnis  temptari  vel 
adhiberi  subsidia,  cui  nee  dearum  quidem  quamquam 
volentium  potuerunt  prodesse  suffragia  ?  Quorsum 
itaque  tantis  laqueis  inclusa  vestigium  porrigam,  qui- 
busque  tectis  vel  etiam  tenebris  abscondita  magnae 
Veneris  inevitabiles  oculos  effugiam  ?  Quin  igitur 
masculum  tandem  sumis  animum  et  cassae  speculae 
renuntias  fortiter,  et  ultroneam  te  dominae  tuae 
reddis  et  vel  sera  modestia  saevientes  impetus  eius 
mitigas  ?  Qui  scias  an  etiam,  quern  diu  quaeritas, 
illuc  in  domo  matris  repperias  'i '  Sic  ad  dubium 
obsequium,  immo  ad  certum  exitium  praeparata  prin- 
cipium  futurae  secum  meditabatur  obsecrationis. 

g  "  At  Venus  terrenis  remediis  inquisitionis  abnuens 
caelurn  petit.  lubet  instrui  currum,  quern  ei  V^l- 
canus  aurifex  subtili  fabrica  studiose  poliverat  et 
ante  thalami  rudimentum  nuptiale  munus  obtulerat, 
limae  tenuantis  detrimento  conspicuum  et  ipsius  auri 
damno  pretiosum.  De  multis  quae  circa  cubiculum 
dominae  stabulant,  procedunt  quatuor  candidae 

help  thee  ;  but  I  am  ashamed  to  do  anything  con- 
trary to  the  will  of  my  daughter-in-law  Venus,  whom 
always  I  have  loved  as  mine  own  child ;  and  more- 
over I  shall  incur  the  danger  of  the  law  entitled  De 
servo  corrupto,  whereby  I  am  forbidden  to  retain  any 
servant  fugitive  against  the  will  of  his  master.' 

"Then  Psyche,  terrified  at  this  new  shipwreck  of 
fortune,  as  without  all  hope  of  her  safety  and  the  re- 
covery of  her  husband,  reasoned  with  herself  in  this 
sort :  '  Now  what  comfort  or  remedy  is  left  to  my 
afflictions,  when  as  my  prayers  will  nothing  avail 
with  the  goddesses,  though  they  be  willing  enough 
to  help  me  ?  What  shall  1  do  ?  Whither  shall  I  go, 
that  am  set  about  and  surrounded  with  such  snares  ? 
In  what  cave  or  darkness  shall  I  hide  myself  to  avoid 
the  piercing  eyes  of  Venus  ?  Why  do  I  not  take  a 
good  heart,  renouncing  my  vain  hopes,  arid  offer  my- 
self with  humility  (though  it  be  late)  unto  her  whose 
anger  I  have  wrought  and  so  try  to  soften  her  great 
fury  ?  What  do  I  know  whether  he  whom  I  seek 
for  so  long  be  not  in  the  house  of  his  mother  ? ' 
Thus  unto  a  doubtful  service,  nay  unto  certain  de- 
struction, Psyche  prepared  herself  how  she  might 
make  her  orison  and  prayer  unto  Venus. 

"  But  Venus,  after  that  she  was  weary  with  searching 
over  all  the  earth  for  Psyche,  returned  towards  heaven 
and  commanded  that  one  should  prepare  the  chariot 
which  her  husband  Vulcanus  had  most  curiously 
shaped  and  given  unto  her  as  a  marriage  gift  before 
that  she  had  first  entered  the  bridal  chamber ;  and 
it  was  so  finely  wrought  that  it  had  been  made  the 
more  precious  even  of  the  very  gold  which  the  file 
had  taken  away.  Four  white  doves,  out  of  all  those 
that  stood  sentinel  to  the  chamber  of  their  lady, 
stepped  very  briskly  in  front  and  bowed  their 
B  257 


columbae,  et  hilaris  incessibus  picta  colla  torquentes 
iugum  gemmeum  subeunt  susceptaque  domina  laetae 
subvolant.  Currum  deae  prosequentes  gannitti  con- 
strepenti  lasciviunt  passeres  et  ceterae  quae  dulce 
cantitant  aves  melleis  modulis  suave  resonantes  ad- 
ventum  deae  pronuntiaut.  Cedunt  nubes  et  caelum 
filiae  panditur  et  summus  aether  cum  gaudio  suscipit 
deam,  nee  obvias  aquilas  vel  accipitres  rapaces  perti- 
mescit  magnae  Veneris  canora  familia. 

"  Tune  se  protinus  ad  lovis  regias  arces  dirigit  et 
petitu  superbo  Mercuri,  del  vocalis,  operae  neces- 
sariam  usuram  postulat.  Nee  renuit  lovis  caerulum 
supercilium  :  tune  ovans  illico,  comitante  etiam 
Mercuric,  Venus  caelo  demeat  eique  sollicite  serit 
verba  :  '  Prater  Arcadi,  scis  nempe  sororem  tuam 
Venerem  sine  Mercuri  praesentia  nil  unquam  fecisse, 
nee  te  praeterit  utique  quanto  iam  tempore  delites- 
centem  ancillam  nequiverim  repperire  :  nil  ergo 
superest  quam  tuo  praeconio  praemium  investiga- 
tionis  publicitus  edicere.  Fac  ergo  mandatum  ma- 
tures meum  et  indicia,  qui  possit  agnosci,  manifeste 
designes,  ne,  si  quis  occultationis  illicitae  crimen 
subierit,  ignorantiae  se  possit  excusatione  defend  ere'; 
et  simul  dicens  libellum  ei  porrigit,  ubi  Psyches 
nomen  continebatur  et  cetera.  Quo  facto  protinus 
domum  secessit. 

"  Nee  Mercurius  omisit  obsequium  :  nam  per 
omnium  ora  populorum  passim  discurrens  sic  man- 

rainbow-coloured  necks  to  the  yoke  of  precious  gems, 
and  when  Venus  was  entered  in,  bore  up  the  chariot 
with  great  diligence.     After  her  chariot  there  fol- 
lowed a  number  of  sparrows  chirping  about,  making 
sign  of  joy,  and   all  other  kind  of  birds  sang  very 
sweetly  with  honeyed  notes,  forcshewing  the  coming 
of  the  great  goddess  :    the  clouds  gave  place,  the 
heavens   opened    and    the    upper   air   received    her 
joyfully,  the  birds  that  followed,  being  the  tuneful 
choir  of  Venus,  nothing  feared  the  eagles,  hawks,  and 
other  ravenous  fowl  in  the  air.     Incontinently  she 
went  unto  the  royal  palace  of  the  god  Jupiter,  and 
with  proud  and  bold  petition  demanded  the  service 
of  Mercury  the  herald  in  certain  of  her  affairs,  where- 
unto  Jupiter  consented,  nodding  with  his  azure  brow  ; 
then  with  much  joy  she  descended  from  heaven  with 
Mercury,  and  gave  him  an  earnest  charge  to  put  in 
execution  her  words,  saying :  '  O  my  brother,  born 
in  Arcadia,  thou  knowest  well  that  I  (who  am  thy 
sister)  did  never  enterprise  to  do  anything  without 
thy  presence  :  thou  knowest  also  how  long  I  have 
sought  for  a  girl  that  is  a-hiding  and  cannot  find  her  : 
wherefore  there  resteth  nothing  else  save  that  thou 
do  publicly  pronounce  the  reward  to  such  as  take 
her.     See  thou  put  in  execution  my  commandment, 
account  the  signs  by  which  she  may  be  known,  and 
declare  that   whatsoever  he  be  that  retaineth  her 
wittingly  against  my  will,  he  shall  not  defend  himself 
by  any  mean   or  excusation.'     And  when  she  had 
spoken  this,  she  delivered  unto  him  a  paper  wherein 
was  contained  the  name  of  Psyche  arid  the  residue 
of  his  publication ;  which  done,  she  departed  away 
to  her  lodging. 

"  By  and  by   Mercurius,  obeying  her  commands, 
proclaimed  throughout  all  the  world  that  whatsoever 



datae  praedicationis  munus  exsequebatur  :  '  Si  quis 
a  fuga  retrahere  vel  occultam  demonstrare  poterit 
fugitivam  regis  filiam,  Veneris  ancillam,  nomine 
Psychen,  conveniat  retro  metas  Murtias  Mercurium 
praedicatorem,  accepturus  indicivae  nomine  ab  ipsa 
Venere  septem  savia  suavia  et  unum  blandientis 
appulsu  linguae  longe  mellitum.'  Ad  hunc  modum 
pronuntiante  Mercurio  tanti  praemii  cupido  certatim 
omnium  mortalium  studium  arrexerat :  quae  res 
nunc  vel  maxime  sustulit  Psyches  omnem  cuncta- 
tionem.  lamque  fores  et  ius  dominae  proximanti 
occurrit  una  de  famulitione  Veneris,  nomine  Con- 
suetudo,  statimque,  quantum  maxime  potuit,  excla- 
mat :  '  Tandem,  ancilla  nequissima,  dominam  habere 
te  scire  coepisti  ?  An  pro  cetera  morum  tuorum 
temeritate  istud  quoque  nescire  te  fingis,  quantos 
labores  circa  tuas  inquisitiones  sustinuerimus  ?  Sed 
bene,  quod  meas  potissimum  manus  incidjsti  et  inter 
Orci  cancros  iam  ipsos  haesisti,  datura  scilicet 
9  actutum  tantae  contumaciae  poenas ' ;  et  auda- 
citer  in  capillos  eius  immissa  manu  trahebat  earn 
nequaquam  renitentem.  Quam  ubi  primum  induc- 
tam  oblatamque  sibi  conspexit  Venus,  laetissimum 
cachinnum  extollit,  et  qualem  solent  frequenter  irati} 
caputque  quatiens  et  ascalpens  aurem  dexteram, 
'  Tandem  '  inquit  '  Dignata  es  socrum  tuam  salu- 
tare  ?  An  potius  maritum,  qui  tuo  vulnere  pericli- 
tatur,  intervisere  venisti  ?  Sed  esto  secura ;  iam 
enim  excipiam  te  ut  bonam  nurum  condecet ' :  et 
'  Ubi  sunt '  inquit  '  Sollicitudo  atque  Tristities, 


he  were  that  could  bring  back  or  tell  any  tidings  of 
a  kind's  fugitive  daughter,  the  servant  of  Venus, 
named  Psyche,  let  him  bring  word  to  Mercury,  behind 
the  Murtian  temple,  and  for  reward  of  his  pains  he 
should  receive  seven  sweet  kisses  of  Venus  and  one 
more  sweetly  honeyed  from  the  touch  of  her  loving 
tongue.  After  that  Mercury  had  pronounced  these 
things,  every  man  was  inflamed  with  desire  of  so 
great  a  guerdon  to  search  her  out,  and  this  was 
the  cause  that  put  away  all  doubt  from  Psyche, 
who  was  all  but  come  in  sight  of  the  house  ot 
Venus :  but  one  of  her  servants  called  Custom 
came  out,  who,  espying  Psyche,  cried  with  a  loud 
voice  :  '  O  wicked  harlot  as  thou  art,  now  at 
length  thou  shalt  know  that  thou  hast  a  mistress 
above  thee  ;  what,  beside  all  thy  other  bold  carriage, 
dost  thou  make  thyself  ignorant,  as  if  thou  diddest 
not  understand  what  travail  we  have  taken  in  search- 
ing for  thee  ?  I  am  glad  that  thou  art  come  into  my 
hands,  thou  art  now  in  the  claws  of  Hell,  and  shalt 
abide  the  pain  and  punishment  of  thy  great  con- 
tumacy '  ;  and  therewithal  she  seized  her  by 
the  hair,  and  brought  her  before  the  presence  of 

"  When  Venus  espied  her  brought  into  her 
presence,  she  began  to  laugh  loudly,  as  angry 
persons  accustom  to  do,  and  she  shaked  her  head 
and  scratched  her  right  ear,1  saying  :  '  Have  you  now 
deigned  at  length  to  visit  your  mother?  Or  per- 
chance to  visit  your  husband,  that  is  in  danger  of 
death  by  your  means  ?  Be  you  assured  I  will  handle 
you  like  a  daughter ;  where  be  my  maidens  Sorrow 
and  Sadness  ? '  To  whom,  when  they  came,  she 

i  Pliny,  Natural  History,  XI.  45 :  "  Behind  the  right  ear 
likewise  is  the  proper  place  of  Nemesis." 



ancillae  meae?';  quibus  intro  vocatis  torquendara 
tradidit  earn.  At  illae  sequentes  herile  praeceptum 
Psychen  misellani  flagellis  afflictam  et  ceteris  tor- 
mentis  excruciatam  iterum  dominae  conspectui  red- 
dunt.  Tune  rursus  sublato  risu  Venus  '  Et  ecce ' 
inquit  '  Nobis  turgidi  ventris  sui  lenocinio  commovet 
miserationem,  unde  me  praeclara  subole  aviam  beatam 
scilicet  faciat.  Felix  vero  ego,  quae  in  ipso  aetatis 
meae  flore  vocabor  avia,  et  vilis  ancillae  filius  nepos 
Veneris  audiet.  Quamquam  inepta  ego  frustra  filium 
dicam  :  impares  enim  nuptiae,  et  praetera  in  villa  sine 
testibus,  et  patre  non  consentiente  factae  legitimae 
non  possunt  videri,  ac  per  hoc  spurius  iste  nascetur, 
si  tamen  partum  omnino  perferre  te  patiemur/ 
10  "His  editis  involat  earn  vestemque  plurifariam 
diloricat,  capilloque  discisso  et  capite  conquassato  gra- 
viter  affligit,  et  accepto  frumento  et  hordeo  et  milio 
et  papavere  et  cicere  et  lente  et  faba  commixtisque 
acervatim  confusis  in  unum  grumulum  sic  ad  illam  : 
'  Videris  enim  mihi  tarn  deformis  ancilla  nullo  alio  sed 
tantum  sedulo  ministerio  amatores  tuos  promereri : 
iam  ergo  et  ipsa  frugem  tuam  periclitabor.  Discerne 
seminum  istorum  passivam  congeriem  singulisque 
granis  rite  dispositis  atque  seiugatis  ante  istam  ves- 
peram  opus  expedituni  approbate  mihi.'  Sic  assig- 
nato  tantorum  seminum  cumulo  ipsa  cenae  nuptiali 
concessit.  Nee  Psyche  manus  admolitur  inconditae 


delivered  Psyche  to  be  cruelly  tormented.  They 
fulfilled  the  commandment  of  their  mistress,  and 
after  they  had  piteously  scourged  her  with  whips 
and  had  otherwise  tormented  her,  they  presented 
her  again  before  Venus.  Then  she  began  to  laugh 
again,  saying  : '  Behold,  she  thinketh  that  by  reason 
of  her  great  belly,  which  she  hath  gotten  by  playing 
the  whore,  to  move  me  to  pity,  and  to  make  me  a 
happy  grandmother  to  her  noble  child.  Am  not  I 
happy,  that  in  the  nourishing  time  of  all  mine  age 
shall  be  called  a  grandmother,  and  the  son  of  a  vile 
harlot  shall  be  accounted  the  grandson  of  Venus. 
Howbeit  I  am  a  fool  to  term  him  by  the  name  of  a 
son,  since  as  the  marriage  was  made  between  unequal 
persons,  in  no  town,  without  witnesses,  and  not  by 
the  consent  of  their  parents,  therefore  the  marriage 
is  illegitimate,  and  the  child  (that  shall  be  born)  a 
bastard,  if  indeed  we  fortune  to  suffer  thee  to  live  till 
thou  be  delivered.' 

"  When  Venus  had  spoken  these  words,  she  leaped 
upon  poor  Psyche,  and  (tearing  everywhere  her 
apparel)  took  her  violently  by  the  hair,  and  dashed 
her  head  upon  the  ground.  Then  she  took  a  great 
quantity  of  wheat,  barley,  millet,  poppy-seed,  pease, 
lentils,  and  beans,  and  mingled  them  all  together  on 
a  heap,  saying  :  '  Thou  art  so  evil-favoured,  girl, 
that  thou  seemest  unable  to  get  the  grace  of  thy 
lovers  by  no  other  means,  but  only  by  diligent  and 
painful  service :  wherefore  I  will  prove  what  thou 
canst  do  ;  see  that  thou  separate  all  these  grains  one 
from  another,  disposing  them  orderly  in  their  quality, 
and  let  it  be  clone  to  my  content  before  night.'  When 
she  had  appointed  this  heap  of  seeds  unto  Psyche,  she 
departed  to  a  great  banquet  for  a  marriage  that  was 
prepared  that  day.  But  Psyche  went  not  about  to 


illi  et  inextricabili  moli,  sed  immanitate  praecepti 
consternata  silens  obstupescit.  Tune  formicula  ilia 
parvula  atque  ruricola,  certa  difficultatis  tantae 
laborisque.  miserta  contubernalis  magni  dei  socrusque 
saevitiam  execrata  discurrens  naviter  convocat  corro- 
gatque  cunctam  formicarum  accolarum  classem : 
'  Miseremini  terrae  omniparentis  agiles  alumnae, mise- 
remini  et  Amoris  uxori,  puellae  lepidae,  periclitanti 
prompta  velocitate  succurrite.'  Ruunt  aliae  super- 
que  aliae  sepedum  populorum  undae  summoque 
studio  singulae  granatim  totum  digerunt  acervum 
separatimque  distributis  dissitisque  generibus  e  con- 
spectu  perniciter  abeunt. 

11  "  Sed  initio  noctis  e  convivio  nuptiali  vino  ma- 
dens  et  fragrans  balsama  Venus  remeat  totumque 
revincta  corpus  rosis  micantibus,  visaque  diligentia 
miri  laboris,  '  Non  tuum '  inquit  *  Nequissima, 
nee  tuarum  manuum  istud  opus  sed  illius,  cui 
tuo,  immo  et  ipsius  malo  placuisti ' ;  et  frusto 
cibarii  panis  ei  proiecto  cubitum  facessit.  Interim 
Cupido  solus  interioris  domus  unici  cubiculi  custo- 
dia  clausus  coercebatur  acriter,  partim  ne  petulanti 
luxurie  vulnus  gravaret,  partim  ne  cum  sua  cupita 
conveniret.  Sic  ergo  distentis  et  sub  uno  tecto  sepa- 
ratis  amatoribus  tetra  nox  exanclata.  Sed  Aurora 
commodum  inequitante  vocatae  Psychae  Venus  infit 
talia  :  'Videsne  illud  nemus  quod  fluvio  praeter- 


dissever  the  grain  (as  being  a  thing  impossible  to  be 
brought  to  pass,  by  reason  it  lay  so  confusedly  scat- 
tered) but  being  astonied  at  the  cruel  nommand- 
ment  of  Venus,  sat  still  and  said  nothing.  Then  the 
little  pismire  the  ant,  that  dwelleth  in  the  fields, 
knowing  and  taking  pity  of  the  great  difficulty  and 
labour  of  the  consort  of  so  great  a  god,  and  cursing 
the  cruelness  of  so  evil  a  mother,  ran  about  nimbly 
hither  and  thither,  and  called  to  her  all  the  ants  of 
the  country,  saying:  'I  pray  you,  my  friends,  ye 
quick  daughters  of  the  ground  the  mother  of  all 
things,  take  mercy  on  this  poor  maid  espoused  to 
Cupid,  who  is  in  great  danger  of  her  person ;  I  pray 
you  help  her  with  all  diligence.'  Incontinently  they 
came,  the  hosts  of  six-footed  creatures  one  after 
another  in  waves,  separating  and  dividing  the  grain, 
and  after  that  they  had  put  each  kind  of  corn  in 
order,  they  ran  away  again  in  all  haste  from  her  sight 
"When  night  came,  Venus  returned  home  from 
the  banquet  well  tippled  with  wine,  smelling  of 
balm,  and  all  her  body  crowned  with  garlands  of 
roses,  who  when  she  espied  with  what  great  diligence 
the  work  was  done,  began  to  say :  '  This  is  not  the 
labour  of  thy  hands,  vile  quean,  but  rather  of  his 
that  is  amorous  of  thee  to  thy  hurt  and  his.'  Then 
she  gave  her  a  morsel  of  brown  bread,  and  went  to 
sleep.  In  the  mean  season  Cupid  was  closed  fast  in 
the  most  surest  chamber  of  the  house,  partly  because 
he  should  not  hurt  himself  the  more  with  wanton 
dalliance,  and  partly  because  he  should  not  speak 
with  his  love.  So  was  the  night  bitterly  passed  by 
these  two  lovers  divided  one  from  another  beneath 
the  same  roof.  But  when  Aurora  was  driving  in 
through  the  morning  sky,  Venus  called  Psyche,  and 
said :  '  Seest  thou  yonder  forest  that  extendeth  out 



luenti  ripisque  longis  attenditur,  cuius  imi  frutices  l 
vicinum  fontem  despiciunt?  Oves  ibi  nitentes  aurique 
colore2  florentes  incustodito  pastu  vagantur :  inde  de 
coma  pretiosi  velleris  floccum  inihi  confestira  quoquo 
modo  quaesitum  afFeras  censeo.' 

"  Perrexit  Psyche  volenter,  non  obsequium  qui- 
dem  ilia  functura,  sed  requiem  malorum  praecipitio 
fluvialis  rupis  habitura.  Sed  inde  de  fluvio  musicae 
suavis  nutricula  leni  crepitu  dulcis  aurae  divinitus 
inspirata  sic  vaticinatur  arundo  viridis :  '  Psyche, 
tantis  aerumnis  exercita,  neque  tua  miserrim,a  morte 
meas  sanctas  aquas  polluas  nee  vero  istud  horae 3 
contra  formidabiles  oves  feras  aditum,  quoad  de  solis 
flagrantia  mutuatae  calorem  truci  rabie  soleut  efFerri 
cornuque  acuto  et  fronte  saxea  et  nonnunquam 
venenatis  morsibus  in  exitium  saevire  mortalium 
Sed  dum  meridies  solis  sedaverit  vaporem  et  pecua 
spiritus  fluvialis  serenitate  conquieverint,  poteris  sub 
ilia  procerissima  platano,  quae  raecum  simul  unum 
fluentum  bibit,  latenter  abscondere.  Et  cum  primum 
mitigata  furia  laxaverint  oves  animum,  percussis 
frondibus  attigui  nemoris  lanosum  aurum  repperies, 
13  quod  passim  stirpibus  convexis  obhaerescit.'  Sic 
arundo  simplex  et  humana  Psychen  aegerrimam 
salutem  suam  docebat :  nee  auscultatu  impaenitendo  4 

1  Cuius  must  necessarily  refer  to  the  grove,  and  not  to  the 
river,  so  that  the  MSS'  gurgites  cannot  stand.    Van  der  Vliet's 
frutices  is  a  possible  suggestion. 

2  This  is  the  correction  of  the  older  editors  for  the  un- 
intelligible aurive  cole  of  the  MSS. 


in  length  with  the  river-banks,  the  bushes  whereof 
look  close  down  upon  the  stream  hard  by  ?  There  be 
great  sheep  shining  like  gold,  and  kept  by  no  manner 
of  person;  I  command  thee  that  thou  go  thither  and 
bring  me  home  some  of  the  wool  of  their  fleeces.' 

"  Psyche  arose  willingly,  not  to  do  her  command- 
ment, but  to  throw  herself  headlong  into  the  water 
to  end  her  sorrow.  But  then  a  green  reed,  nurse  of 
sweet  music,  inspired  by  divine  inspiration  with  a 
gracious  tune  and  melody,  began  to  say :  'O  Psyche, 
harried  by  these  great  labours,  I  pray  thee  not  to 
trouble  or  pollute  my  holy  water  by  thy  wretched 
death,  and  yet  beware  that  thou  go  not  towards  the 
terrible  wild  sheep  of  this  coast  until  such  time  as 
the  heat  of  the  sun  be  past ;  for  when  the  sun  is  in 
his  force,  then  seem  they  most  dreadful  and  furious 
with  their  sharp  horns,  their  stony  foreheads,  and 
their  poisonous  bites  wherewith  they  arm  themselves 
to  the  destruction  of  mankind  :  but  until  the  midday 
is  past  and  the  heat  assuaged,  and  until  the  flock  doth 
begin  to  rest  in  the  gentle  breeze  of  the  river,  thou 
mayest  hide  thyself  here  by  me  under  this  great 
plane-tree,  which  drinks  of  the  river  as  I  do  also,  and 
as  soon  as  their  great  fury  is  past  and  their  passion 
is  stilled,  thou  mayest  go  among  the  thickets  and 
bushes  under  the  wood-side  and  gather  the  locks  of 
their  golden  fleeces  which  thou  shalt  find  hanging 
upon  the  briars.'  Thus  spake  the  gentle  and 
benign  reed,  shewing  a  mean  to  most  wretched 
Psyche  to  save  her  life,  which  she  bare  well  in 

s  So  Salmasius  for  the  MSS'  ittius  orac. 

4  Why  should  Psyche  be  sorry  that  she  had  listened  to  flie 
reed,  as  the  MSS  '(reading  paenitendo)  imply?  The  exact 
opposite  is  the  case,  and  is  supplied  by  Petscheiiig's  emendatiou 
as  in  the  text. 


diligenter  instructa  ilia  cessavit,  sed  observatis  omni- 
bus furatrina  facili  flaventis  auri  mollitie  congestum 
gremium  Veneri  reportat.  Nee  tamen  apud  domi- 
nam  saltern  secundi  laboris  periculum  secundum 
testimonium  meruit,  sed  contortis  superciliis  surri- 
dens  amarum  sic  inquit :  '  Nee  me  praeterit  huius 
quoque  facti  auctor  adulterinus.  Sed  iam  nunc  ego 
sedulo  periclitabor,  an  oppido  forti  animo  singu- 
larique  prudentia  sis  praedita.  Videsne  insistentem 
celsissimae  illi  rupi  mentis  ardui  verticem,  de  quo 
fontis  atri  fuscae  defluunt  undae  proxumaeque  con- 
ceptaculo  vallis  inclusae  Stygias  irrigant  paludes  et 
rauca  Cocyti  fluenta  nutriunt  ?  Indidem  mihi  de 
summi  fontis  penita  scaturigine  rorem  rigentem 
hauritum  ista  confestim  defer  urnula.'  Sic  aiens 
crystallo  dedolatum  vasculum,  insuper  ei  graviora 
comminata,  tradidit. 

14,  "At  ilia  studiose  gradum  celerans  mentis  extre- 
mum  petit  cumulum  certe  vel  illic  inventura  vitae 
pessimae  finem.  Sed  cum  primum  praedicti  iugi  con- 
terminos  locos  appulit,  videt  rei  vastae  letalem  diffi- 
cultatemr  :  namque  saxum  immani  magnitudine 
procerum  et  inaccessa  salebritate  lubricum  mediis 
e  faucibus  lapidis  fontes  horridos  evomebat,  qui 
statim  proni  foraminis  lacunis  editi  perque  proclive 
delapsi  et  angusti  canalis  exarato1  contecti  tramite 
i  So  Petschenig  with  great  probability  for  the  MSS'  exarto. 


memory,  and  with  all  diligence  went  and  gathered 
up  such  locks  as  she  found  and  put  them  in  her  apron 
and  carried  them  home  to  Venus  :  howbeit  the  danger 
of  this  second  labour  did  not  please  her,  nor  give  her 
sufficient  witness  of  the  good  service  of  Psyche,  but 
twisting  her  brows  with  a  sour  resemblance  of 
laughter,  she  said:  'Of  a  certainty  I  know  that 
another  is  the  author  of  this  thy  deed,  but  I  will 
prove  if  thou  be  truly  of  so  stout  a  courage  and 
singular  prudence  as  thou  seemest.  Seest  thou  the 
high  rock  that  overhangs  the  top  of  yonder  great 
hill,  from  whence  there  runneth  down  water  of  black 
and  deadly  colour  which  is  gathered  together  in  the 
valley  hard  by  and  thence  nourisheth  the  marshes 
of  Styx  and  the  hoarse  torrent  of  Cocytus  ?  I  charge 
thee  to  go  thither  and  bring  me  a  vessel  of  that 
freezing  water  from  the  middest  flow  of  the  top  of 
that  spring '  :  wherewithal  she  gave  her  a  bottle  of 
carven  crystal,  menacing  and  threatening  her  more 
rigorously  than  before. 

"  Then  poor  Psyche  went  in  all  haste  to  the  top  of 
the  mountain,  rather  to  end  her  wretched  life  than 
to  fetch  any  water,  and  when  she  was  come  up  to  the 
ridge  of  the  hill,  she  perceived  that  it  was  very 
deadly  and  impossible  to  bring  it  to  pass,  for  she  saw 
a  great  rock,  very  high  and  not  to  be  approached  by 
reason  that  it  was  exceeding  rugged  and  slippery, 
gushing  out  most  horrible  fountains  of  waters,  which, 
bursting  forth  from  a  cavernous  mouth  that  sloped 
downwards,  ran  below  and  fell  through  a  close  and 
covered  watercourse  which  they  had  digged  out,  by 
many  stops  and  passages,  into  the  valley  beneath.  On 
each  side  she  saw  great  dragons  creeping  upon  the 
hollow  rocks  and  stretching  out  their  long  and  bloody 
necks,  with  eyes  that  never  slept  devoted  to  watch  - 



proxumam  convallem  latenter  incidebant.  Dextra 
laevaque  cautibus  cavatis  proserpunt  et  longa  colla 
porrecti  saevi  dvacones  inconnivae  vigiliae  luminibus 
addictis  et  in  perpetuam  lucem  pupulis  excubantibus. 
lamque  et  ipsae  semet  muniebant  vocales  aquae ; 
nam  et  '  Discede/  et  (  Quid  facis  ?  Vide/  et  '  Quid 
agis  ?  Cave/  et '  Fuge/  et '  Peribis  '  subinde  clacnant. 
Sic  impossibilitate  ipsa  mutata  in  lapidem  Psyche 
quamvis  praesenti  corpore^  sensibus  tamen  aberat,  et 
inextricabilis  periculi  mole  prorsus  obruta  lacrimarum 
etiam  extreme  solacio  carebat.  Nee  Providentiae 
bonae  graves  oculos  innocentis  animae  latuit 
aerumna :  nam  primi  lovis  regalis  ales  ilia  re- 
pente  propansis  utrimque  pinnis  affuit  rapax  aquila, 
memorque  veteris  obsequii,  quo  ductu  Cupidinis 
lovi  pocillatorem  Phrygium  sustulerat,  opportunam 
ferens  opem  deique  numen  in  uxoris  laboribus 
percolens,  alti  culminis  diales  vias  deserit,  et  ob  os 
puellae  praevolans  incipit :  ( At  tu  simplex  alio- 
quin  et  expers  rerum  talium,  speras  te  sanctissimi  nee 
minus  truculenti  fontis  vel  unam  stillam  posse  furari 
vel  omnino  contingere  !  Diis  etiam  ipsique  lovi 
fbrmidabiles  aquas  istas  Stygias  vel  fando  com- 
peristi,  quodque  vos  deieratis  per  numina  deorum, 
deos  per  Stygis  maiestatem  solere  !  Sed  cedo  istam 
urnulam/  et  protinus  arreptam  complexamque  fes- 
tinat  libratisque  pinnarum  nutantium  molibus  inter 
genas  saevientium  dentium  et  trisulca  vibramina  dra- 
conum  remigium  dextra  laevaque  porrigens  volentes 


fulness,  their  pupils  always  awake  to  the  unfailing 
light,  which  were  appointed  to  keep  the  river  there  : 
the  very  waters  protected  themselves  with  voices,  for 
they  seemed  to  themselves  likewise  saying  :  '  Away, 
away,  what  wilt  thou  do  ?  Fly,  fly,  or  else  thou  wilt 
be  slain.'  Then  Psyche  (seeing  the  impossibility  of 
this  affair)  stood  still  as  though  she  were  transformed 
into  stone,  and  although  she  was  present  in  body, 
yet  was  she  absent  in  spirit  and  sense,  overcome  by 
reason  of  the  great  and  inevitable  peril  which  she 
saw,  in  so  much  that  she  could  not  even  comfort  her- 
self with  weeping.  Yet  the  sorrow  of  this  innocent 
escaped  not  the  watchful  eyes  of  good  Providence, 
and  the  royal  bird  of  great  Jupiter,  the  eagle,  swept 
down  on  wings  stretched  out,  remembering  his  old 
service  which  he  had  done,  when  by  the  leading  of 
Cupid  he  brought  up  the  Phrygian  boy  to  the 
heavens,  to  be  made  the  butler  of  Jupiter,  and 
minding  to  shew  the  like  service  in  the  person  of 
the  wife  of  Cupid,  and  came  from  the  high  house  of 
the  skies,  and  flying  past  the  girl's  face  said  unto 
Psyche  :  '  O  simple  woman,  without  all  experience  of 
such  things,  dost  thou  think  to  get  or  dip  up  any  drop 
of  this  dreadful  water  ?  No,  no,  assure  thyself  thou 
art  never  able  to  come  nigh  it,  for  the  gods  them- 
selves, and  even  very  Jupiter,  do  greatly  fear  so 
much  as  to  name  those  waters  of  Styx  ;  what,  have 
you  not  heard  that  as  it  is  a  custom  among  men  to 
swear  by  the  puissance  of  the  gods,  so  the  gods  do 
swear  by  the  majesty  of  the  river  Styx  ?  But  give 
me  thy  bottle '  :  and  suddenly  he  took  it  and  held 
it,  and  hastened  on  the  poise  of  his  beating  wings 
betwixt  the  ravening  teeth  and  terrible  darting 
tongues  of  the  dragons  by  right  and  by  left,  and 
filled  it  with  the  water  of  the  river  which  yet  came 



aquas  et  ut  abiret  innoxius  permittentes  l  excipit,  com- 
mentus  ob  iussum  Veneris  patere  eique  se  prae- 
ministrare,  quare  paulo  facilior  adeundi  fuit  copia. 

16  Sic  acceptam  cum  gaudio  plenam  urnulam  Psyche 
Veneri  citata  rettulit.     Nee  tamen  nutum  deae  sae- 
vientis  vel  tune  expiare  potuit :  nam  sic  earn  maiora 
atque  peiora  flagitia  comminans   appellaJT,   renidens 
exitiabile :  '  lam  tu  quidem  maga  videris   quaedam 
mihi  et  alta  prorsus  malefica,  quae  talibus  praeceptrs 
meis  obtemperasti  naviter ;    sed   adhuc   istud,    mea 
pupula,  ministrare  debebis.     Sume  istam   pyxidem' 
(et   dedit)    '  Protinusque  ad   inferos    et   ipsius  Orci 
ferales  penates  te  derige.     Tune  conferens  pyxidem 
Proserpinae,  "  Petit  de  te  Venus/'  dicito,  "  Modicum 
de  tua  mittas   ei  formositate,  vel  ad  unam    saltern 
dieculam  sufficiens :    nam  quod    habuit   dum    filium 
curat  aegrotum  consumpsit  atque    contrivit  omne." 
Sed  baud  immaturius  redito,  quia  me    necesse   est 
indidem  delitam  theatrum  deorum  frequentare.' 

17  "Tune  Psyche  vel  maxime  sensit  ultimas  fortunas 
suas  et  velamento  reiecto  ad  promptum  exitium  sese 
compelli    manifeste    comperit :     quidni,    quae    suis 
pedibus    ultro    ad     Tartarum     Manesque    commeare 
cogeretur?     Nee  cunctata  diutius  pergit  ad  quam- 
piam  turrim   praealtam    indidem   sese   datura  prae- 
cipitem ;  sic  enim  rebatur   ad   inferos    recta   atque 
pulcherrime  se  posse  descendere.      Sed  turris  pro- 
rumpit    in    vocem    subitam,    et     '  Quid   te '    inquit 
f  Praecipitem,  o  misella,  quaeris  extinguere  ?     Quid- 
que  iam  novissimo   periculo   laborique   isto   temere 
succumbis  ?      Nam   si   spiritus    corpore    tuo    semel 
fuerit    seiugatus,    ibis    quidem    profecto    ad   imum 
Tartarum,  sed    inde     nullo    pacto    redire     poteris. 

i  The  MSS  here  read  minantes  or  potantes,  showing  signs  of 
erasure  and  alteration.     Pe/'mittentes  is  due  to  Bluemner,  who 


willingly  that  he  might  depart  unharmed  :  for  he 
feigned  that  he  sought  it  by  the  command  of  Venus, 
and  so  was  his  coming  made  somewhat  more  easy' 
Then  Psyche,  being  very  joyful  thereof,  took  the  full 
bottle  and  quickly  presented  it  to  Venus.  Nor 
would  the  furious  goddess  even  yet  be  appeased,  but 
menacing  more  and  more,  and  smiling  most  cruelly, 
said:  'What?  Thou  seemest  unto  me  a  very  witch 
and  a  most  deep  enchantress,  thou  hast  so  nimbly 
obeyed  my  commands.  Howbeit  thou  shalt  do  one 
thing  more,  my  poppet;  take  this  box  and  go  to 
Hell  and  the  deadly  house  of  Orcus,  and  desire 
Proserpina  to  send  me  a  little  of  her  beauty,  as 
much  as  will  serve  me  the  space  of  one  day,  and  say 
that  such  as  1  had  is  consumed  away  in  tending  mv 
son  that  is  sick  :  but  return  again  quickly,  for  I  must 
dress  myself  therewithal,  and  go  to  the  theatre  of 
the  gods.' 

"Then  the  poor  Psyche  clearly  perceived  the  end 
of  all  her  fortune,  seeing  that  all  pretence  was 
thrown  off,  and  manifestly  she  was  being  driven  to 
present  destruction ;  and  not  without  cause,  as  she 
was  compelled  to  go  upon  her  own  feet  to  the  gulf 
and  furies  of  Hell.  Wherefore  without  any  further 
delay,  she  went  up  to  a  high  tower  to  throw  hert>elf 
down  headlong  (thinking  that  it  was  the  next  and 
readiest  way  to  Hell) :  but  the  tower  (as  inspired) 
spake  suddenly  unto  her,  saying  :  '  O  poor  wretch, 
why  goest  thou  about  to  slay  thyself?  Why  dost 
thou  rashly  yield  unto  thy  last  peril  and  danger? 
Know  thou  that  if  thy  spirit  be  once  separate  from 
thy  body  thou  shalt  surely  go  to  Hell,  but  never  to 
return  again  ;  wherefore  hearken  to  me.  Lace- 
also  wished  to  chauge  innoxius  to  iivnoxia  :  Helm  suggested 

S  273 


18  Mihi   ausculta:    Lacedaemo    Achaiae    nobilis  civitas 
non  longe   sita  est ;    huius   conterminam   deviis   ab- 
ditam  locis    quaere    Taenarum.      Inibi    spiraculum 
Ditis,  et  per  portas  hiantes  monstratur  iter  invium, 
cui  te  limine  transmeato  simul  commiseris,  iam  canale 
directo  perges  ad  ipsam  Orel  regiam.  Sed  non  hacte- 
nus  vacua  debebis  per  illas  tenebras  incedere,  sed  offas 
polentae  mulso  concretas  anibabus  gestare  manibus, 
at  in  ipso  ore  duas  ferre  stipes.   lamque  confecta  bona 
parte  mortiferae  viae  continuaberis  claudum  asinum 
lignorum  gerulum  cum  agasone  simili,  qui  te  rogabit 
decidentis  sarcinae  fusticulos  aliquos  porrigas  ei ;  sed 
tu  nulla  voce  deprompta  tacita  praeterito.     Nee  mora, 
cum  ad  flumen  mortuum  venies^  cui  praefectus  Charon 
protenus  expetens  portorium,  sic  ad  ripam  ulteriorem 
sutili  cymba  deducit  commeantes.     Ergo  et  inter  mor- 
tuos  avaritia  vivit,  nee  Charon  ille  vel  Ditis  pater, 
tantus  deus,  quicquam  gratuito    facit,   sed   moriens 
pauper  viaticum  debet  quaerere,  et  aes  si  forte  prae 
manu  non  fuerit,  nemo  eum  expirare  patietur.     Huic 
squalido    seni  dabis  nauli  nomine  de  stipibus  quas 
feres  alteram,   sic  tamen  ut  ipse  sua  manu  de  tuo 
sumat  ore.     Nee  setius  tibi  pigrum  fluentum  trans- 
meanti    quidam    supernatans   senex   mortuus  putres 
attollens    manus    orabit    ut     eum    intra    navigium 
trahas :    nee    tu    tamen    illicita    afflectare    pietate. 

1 9  Transito    fluvio    modicum    te   progressaui   textrices 
orabunt  anus  telam  struentes,  manus  paulisper  accom- 
modes.     Nee  id  tamen  tibi  contingere  fas  est:  nam 

daemon,  a  city  of  Greece,  is  not  far  hence  :  go  thou 
thither  and  enquire  for  Taenarus,  which  is  hidden  in 
waste  places,  whereas  thou  shalt  find  a  hole,  the 
breathing-place  of  Hell,  and  through  the  open  gate 
is  seen  a  pathless  way  :  hereby  if  thou  enter  across 
that  threshold,  thou  shalt  come  by  a  straight  passage 
even  to  the  palace  of  Pluto.  But  take  heed  that 
thou  go  not  with  empty  hands  through  that  place  of 
darkness  :  but  carry  two  sops  sodden  in  the  flour  of 
barley  and  honey  in  thy  hands,  and  two  halfpence  in 
thy  mouth  ;  and  when  thou  hast  passed  a  good  part  of 
that  deadly  way  thou  shalt  see  a  lame  ass  carrying  of 
wood,  and  a  lame  fellow  driving  him,  who  will  desire 
thee  to  give  him  up  certain  sticks  that  fall  down  from 
his  burden,  but  pass  thou  on  silently  and  do  nothing. 
By  and  by  thou  shalt  come  unto  the  dead  river, 
whereas  Charon  is  ferryman,  who  will  first  have  his 
fare  paid  him  before  he  will  carry  the  souls  over  the 
river  in  his  patched  boat.  Hereby  you  may  see  that 
avarice  reigneth  even  amongst  the  dead  ;  neither 
Charon  nor  Pluto  will  do  anything  for  nought:  for  if 
if  it  be  a  poor  man  that  is  near  to  die,  and  lacketh 
money  in  his  hand,  none  will  allow  him  to  give  up  the 
ghost.  Wherefore  deliver  to  the  foul  old  man  one  of 
the  halfpence  which  thou  bearest  for  thy  passage, 
but  make  him  receive  it  with  his  own  hand  out  of 
thy  mouth.  And  it  shall  come  to  pass  as  thou  sittest 
in  the  boat,  thou  shalt  see  an  old  man  swimming  on 
the  top  of  the  river  holding  up  his  deadly  hands,  and 
desiring  thee  to  receive  him  into  the  bark  ;  but  have 
no  regard  to  his  piteous  cry,  for  it  is  not  lawful  to  do 
so.  When  thou  art  past  over  the  flood  thou  shalt  espy 
certain  old  women  weaving  who  will  desire  thee  to 
help  them,  but  beware  thou  do  not  consent  unto 
them  in  any  case,  for  these  and  like  baits  and  traps 


haec  omnia  tibi  et  multa  alia  d^f  Veneris  insidiis 
orientur,  ut  vel  unam  de  manibus  omittas  offulam : 
nee  putes  futile  istud  polentacium  damnum  leve ; 
altera  enim  perdita,  lux  haec  tibi  prorsus  denegabitur. 
Canis  namque  praegrandis,  teriugo  et  satis  amplo 
capite  praedituSj  hnmanis  et  formidabilis,  tonantibus 
oblatrans  faucibus  mortuos,  quibus  iam  nil  mali  potest 
facere,  frustra  territando  ante  ipsuni  limen  et  atra 
atria  Proserpinae  semper  excubans  servat  vacuam 
Ditis  domuna  :  hunc  offrenatum  unius  ofFulae  praeda 
facile  praeteribis,  ad  ipsamque  protinus  Proserpinam 
introibis,  quae  te  comiter  excipiet  ac  benigne,  ut  et 
molliter  assidere  et  prandium  opipare  suadeat  sumere. 
Sed  tu  et  humi  reside  et  panem  sordidum  petitum 
esto,  deinde  nuntiato  quid  adveiieris,  susceptoque 
quod  offeretur,  rursus  remeans  canis  saevitiam  offula 
reliqua  redime,  ac  deinde,  avaro  navitae  data  quam  re- 
servaveras  stipe  transitoque  eius  fluvio,  recolens  priora 
vestigia  ad  istum  caelestium  siderum  redies  chorum. 
Sed  inter  omnia  hoc  observandum  praecipue  tibi 
censeo,  ne  velis  aperire  vel  inspicere  illam  quam  feres 
pyxidem  vel  omnino  divinae  formositati  addictum 
curiosius  thesaurum.' 

go  "  Sic  turris  ilia  prospicua  vaticinationis  munus 
explicuit.  Nee  morata  Psyche  pergit  Taenarum, 
sumptisque  rite  stipibus  illis  et  offulis,  infernum 
decumt  meatum  transitoque  per  silentium  asinario 
debili  et  amnica  stipe  vectori  data,  neglecto  super- 
natantis  mortui  desiderio,  et  spretis  textricum  sub- 
dolis  precibus,  et  offulae  cibo  sopita  canis  horrenda 
rabie,  domum  Proserpinae  penetrat :  nee  offerentis 



will  Venus  set,  to  make  thee  let  fall  but  one  of  thy 
sops  :  and  think  not  that  the  keeping  of  thy  sops 
is  a  light  matter,  for  if  thou  lose  one  of  them  thou 
shalt  be  assured  never  to  return  again  to  this  world. 
For  there  is  a  great  and  marvellous  dog  with  three 
heads,  huge  and  horrid,  barking  continually  at  the 
souls  of  such  as  enter  in,  to  frighten  them  with  vain 
fear,  by  reason  he  can  now  do  them  no  harm  ;  he 
lieth  day  and  night  before  the  gate  of  Proserpina, 
and  keepeth  the  desolate  house  of  Pluto  with  great 
diligence :  to  whom,  if  thou  cast  one  of  thy  sops, 
thou  mayest  have  access  to  Proserpina  without  all 
danger :  she  will  make  thee  good  cheer,  and  bid 
thee  sit  soft,  and  entertain  thee  with  delicate  meat 
and  drink,  but  sit  thou  upon  the  ground  and  desire 
brown  bread  and  eat  it,  and  then  declare  thy  message 
unto  her,  and  when  thou  hast  received  what  she 
giveth,  in  thy  return  appease  the  rage  of  the  dog 
with  the  other  sop,  and  give  thy  other  halfpenny  to 
covetous  Charon,  and  crossing  his  river  come  the 
same  way  again  as  thou  wentest  in  to  the  upper 
world  of  the  heavenly  stars  :  but  above  all  things  have 
a  regard  that  thou  look  not  in  the  box,  neither  be  not 
too  curious  about  the  treasure  of  the  divine  beauty.' 
"  In  this  manner  the  high  tower  prophetically 
spake  unto  Psyche,  and  advertised  her  what  she 
should  do :  and  immediately  she  took  two  half- 
pence, two  sops,  and  all  things  necessary  and  went 
unto  Taenarus  to  go  towards  Hell,  and  thence 
passing  down  in  silence  by  the  lame  ass,  she  paid  her 
halfpenny  for  passage,  neglected  the  desire  of  the 
dead  old  man  in  the  river,  denied  to  help  the  wily 
prayers  of  the  women  weaving,  and  filled  the 
ravenous  mouth  of  the  dog  with  a  sop,  and  came  to 
the  chamber  of  Proserpina.  There  Psyche  would 



hospitae  sedile  delicatum  vel  cibum  beatum  amplexa 
sed  ante  pedes  eius  residens  humilis,  cibario  pane 
contenta,  Veneriam  pertulit  legationem,  statimque 
secreto  repletam  conclusamque  pyxidem  suscipit, 
et  ofFulae  sequentis  fraude  caninis  latratibus  ob- 
seratis,  residuaque  navitae  reddita  stipe,  longe 
vegetior  ab  inferis  recurrit.  Et  repetita  atque 
adorata  Candida  ista  luce,  quanquam  lestinans  ob- 
sequium  terminare,  mentem  capitur  temeraria  curio- 
sitate,  et  '  Ecce '  inquit  '  Inepta  ego  diyinae  for- 
mositatis  gerula,  quae  nee  tantillum  quidem  indidem 
mihi  delibo,  vel  sic  illi  amatori  meo  formoso  placitura,' 
et  cum  dicto  reserat  pyxidem  :  nee  quicquam  ibi 
rerum  nee  formositas  ulla,  sed  infernus  somnus  ac 
vere  Stygius,  qui  statim  coperculo  revelatus  invadit 
earn  crassaque  soporis  nebula  cunctis  eius  membris 
perfunditur  et  in  ipso  vestigio  ipsaque  semita  col- 
lapsam  possidet;  et  iacebat  immobilis  et  nihil  aliud 
quam  dormiens  cadaver.  Sed  Cupido  iam  cicatrice 
solida  revalescens  nee  diutinam  suae  Psyches  ab- 
sentiam  tolerans,  per  altissimam  cubiculi,  quo  cohi- 
bebatur,  elapsus  fenestram,  vefectisque  pinnis  ali- 
quanta  quiete,  longe  velocius  provolans  Psych  en 
accurrit  suam,  detersoque  somno  curiose  et  rursum 
in  pristinam  pyxidis  sedem  recondito,  Psychen 
innoxio  punctulo  sagittae  suae  suscitat,  et  fEcce' 
inquit  '  Rursum  perieras,  misella,  simili  curiositate. 
Sed  interim  quidem  tu  provinciam,  quae  tibi  matris 
meae  praecepto  mandata  est,  exsequere  naviter ; 
cetera  egomet  videro.'  His  dictis  amator  levis  in 
pinnas  se  dedit,  Psyche  vero  confestim  Veneri  munus 
reportat  Proserpinae. 


not  sit  in  any  royal  seat,  nor  eat  any  delicate  meats, 
but  sitting  lowly  at  the  feet  of  Proserpina,  only  con- 
tented with  coarse  bread,  declared  the  message  of 
Venus,  and  after  she  had  received  a  mystical  secret 
in  the  box  she  departed,  and  stopped  the  mouth  of 
the  dog  with  the  other  sop,  and  paid  the  boatman 
the  other  halfpenny.  Then  returning  more  nimbly 
than  before  from  Hell,  and  worshipping  the  white 
light  of  day,  though  she  was  much  in  haste  to  come 
to  the  end  of  her  task,  she  was  ravished  with  great 
desire,  saying  :  '  Am  not  I  a  fool,  that  knowing  that 
I  carry  here  the  divine  beauty,  will  not  take  a  little 
thereof  to  garnish  my  face,  to  please  my  lover 
withal  ?  '  And  by  and  by  she  opened  the  box,  where 
she  could  perceive  no  beauty  nor  anything  else,  save 
only  an  infernal  and  deadly  sleep,  which  immediately 
invaded  all  her  members  as  soon  as  the  box  was 
uncovered,  covering  her  with  its  dense  cloud  in  such 
sort  that  she  fell  down  on  the  ground,  and  lay  there 
in  her  very  steps  on  that  same  path  as  a  sleeping 
corpse.  But  Cupid  being  now  healed  of  his  wound 
and  malady,  not  able  to  endure  the  long  absence  of 
Psyche,  got  him  secretly  out  at  a  high  window  of  the 
chamber  where  he  was  enclosed,  and  (his  wings 
refreshed  by  a  little  repose)  took  his  flight  towards 
his  loving  wife;  whom  when  he  had  found,  he  wiped 
away  the  sleep  from  her  face,  and  put  it  again  into 
the  box,  and  awaked  her  with  an  harmless  prick  of 
the  tip  of  one  of  his  arrows,  saying :  '  O  wretched 
captive,  behold  thou  wert  well  nigh  perished  again 
with  thy  overmuch  curiosity ;  well,  go  thou,  and  do 
bravely  thy  message  to  my  mother,  and  in  the  mean 
season  I  will  provide  all  things  accordingly  '  ;  where- 
withal he  took  his  flight  into  the  air,  and  Psyche 
brought  to  Venus  the  present  of  Proserpina. 



22  -r  /nterea  Cupido,  amore  nimio  peresus  et  aegra 
facie,    matris    suae    repentinam    sobrietatem    perti- 
mescens  ad  armilliim  redit  alisque   pernicibus  caeli 
penetrate   vertice    magno    lovi    supplicat    suamque 
causam  probat.     Tune  luppiter  prehensa  Cupidinis 
buccula  manuque  ad  os  suum  relata  consaviat,  atque 
sic  ad  ilium  '  Licet  tu  '  inquit  '  Domine  fili,  nunquam 
mi  hi  concessu  deum  decretum  servaris  honorem,  sed 
istud  pectus  meum,  quo  leges  elementorum  et  vices 
siderum  disponuntur,  convulneraris  assiduis  ictibus 
crebrisque  terrenae  libidinis  foedaveris  casibus,  con- 
traque  leges  et  ipsam  luliam  disciplinamque  publicam 
turpibus  adulteriis  existimationem  famamque  meam 
laeseris,  in  serpentes,  in  ignes,  in  feras,  in  aves  et 
gregalia    pecua    serenos    vultus    meos    sordide    re- 
formando  ;  at  tamen  modestiae  meae  memor  quodque 
inter  istas  meas    manus  creveris,  cuncta  perficiam, 
dum  tamen  scias  aemulos  tuos  cavere  ac,  si  qua  nunc 
in  terris  puella  praepollet  pulchritudine,  praesentis 
beneficii  vicem  per  earn  mihi  repensare  te  debere.' 

23  "  Sic  fatus  iubet  Mercurium  deos  omnes  ad  con- 
tionem  protinus  convocare  ac  si  qui  coetu  caelestium 
defuisset,  in  poenam  decem  milium  nummum  conven- 
tum    iri   pronuntiare.     Quo   metu    statim    completo 

1  The  law  of  Augustus  against  adultery.      See  the  com- 
mentators on  Juvenal,  II.  37. 

2  The  various  forms  assumed  by  Jupiter  in  his  love-affuirs 
with  earthly  women.     C'f.  Ovid,  Metamorphoses,  II.  103  : 

"The  Lydian  maiden  in  her  web  did  portray  to  the 


How  Europe  was  by  royal  Jove  beguiled  in  shape  of 
Bull.  .  .  . 

She  portrayed  also  there 

Asterie  struggling  with  an  Erne  which  did  away  her  bear. 
And  over  Leda  she  had  made  a  Swan  his  wings  to  splay. 



"  Now  Cupid  being  more  and  more  in  love  with 
Psyche,  and  fearing  the  sudden  austerity  of  his 
mother,  returned  again  to  his  tricks,  and  did  pierce 
on  swift  wings  into  the  heavens,  and  arrived  before 
Jupiter  to  declare  his  cause  :  then  Jupiter  alter  that 
he  had  eftsoons  embraced  his  dear  i'ace  and  kissed 
his  hand,  began  to  say  in  this  manner :  '  O  my 
lord  and  son,  although  thou  hast  not  given  due 
reverence  and  honour  unto  me  as  thou  oughtest  to 
do,  but  hast  rather  soiled  and  wounded  this  my 
breast  (whereby  the  laws  and  order  of  the  elements 
and  planets  be  disposed)  with  continual  assaults  of 
terrene  luxury  and  against  all  laws,  yea  even  the 
Julian  l  law,  and  the  utility  of  the  public  weal, 
hurting  my  fame  and  name  by  wicked  adulteries, 
and  transforming  my  divine  beauty  into  serpents, 
fire,  savage  beasts,  birds,  and  bulls.2  Howbeit 
remembering  my  modesty,  and  that  I  have  nourished 
thee  with  mine  own  proper  hands,  I  will  do  and 
accomplish  all  thy  desire.  But  still  thou  shouldest 
beware  of  spiteful  and  envious  persons,  and  if  there 
be  any  excellent  maiden  of  comely  beauty  in  the 
world,  remember  yet  the  benefit  which  I  shall  shew 
unto  thee,  by  recompense  of  her  love  towards  me 

"  When  he  had  spoken  these  words,  lie  com- 
manded Mercury  to  call  all  the  gods  to  counsel,  and 
if  any  of  the  celestial  powers  did  fail  of  appearance, 
he  should  be  condemned  in  ten  thousand  pounds  : 
which  sentence  was  such  a  terror  unto  all  the  gods, 

She  added  also  how  by  Jove  in  shape  of  Satyr  g&y 
The  fair  Antiope  with  a  pair  of  children  was  besped.  .  .  . 

And  now  he  also  came 

To  Danae  like  a  shower  of  gold,  to  Aejrine  like  a  flame, 
A  shepherd  to  Mnemosyne,  and  like  a  Serpent  sly 
To  Proserpine." 


caelesti  theatre,  pro  sede  sublimi  sedens  procerus 
luppiter  sic  enuntiat :  '  Dei  conscripti  Musarum  albo, 
adulescentem  istum  quod  manibus  meis  alumnatus 
sim,  profeeto  scitis  omnes,  cuius  primae  iuventutis 
ealoratos  impetus  freno  quodamcoercendos  existimavi. 
Sat  est  cotidianis  eum  fabulis  ob  adulteria  cunctasque 
corruptelas  infamatum :  tollenda  est  omnis  occasio  et 
luxuria  puerilis  nuptialibus  pedicis  alliganda.  Puellam 
elegit  et  virginitate  privavit :  teneat,  possideat,  ana- 
plexus  Psychen  semper  suis  amoribus  perfruatur':  et 
adVenerem  collata  facie,  '  Nee  tu,'  inqtiit '  Filia,  quic- 
quam  contristere  nee  prosapiae  tantae  tuae  statuque 
de  matrimonio  mortali  metuas.  lam  faxo  nuptias 
non  impares  sed  legitimas  et  iure  civili  congruas,'  et 
illico  per  Mercurium  arripi  Psychen  et  in  caelum 
perduci  iubet.  Porrecto  ambrosiae  poculo,  '  Sume/ 
inquit  '  Psyche,  et  immortalis  esto ;  nee  unquam 
digredietur  a  tuo  nexu  Cupido  sed  istae  vobis  erunt 
perpetuae  nuptiae.' 

24  "  Nee  mora,  cum  cena  nuptiaKs  affluens  exhibetur  . 
accumbebat  summum  torum  maritus,  Psychen  gremio 
suo  complexus ;  sic  et  cum  sua  lunone  luppiter  ac 
deinde  per  ordinem  toti  del.  Tune  poculum  nec- 
taris,  quod  vinum  deorum  est,  lovi  quidem  suus  po- 
cillator,  ille  rusticus  puer,  ceteris  vero  Liber  mini- 
strabat,  Vulcanus  cenam  coquebat,  Horae  rosis  et 
ceteris  floribus  purpurabant  omnia,  Gratiae  sparge- 


that  the  high  theatre  was  replenished  with  them,  and 
Jupiter  began  to  speak  in  this  sort :  '  O  ye  Gods, 
registered  in  the  books  of  the  Muses,  you  all  doubt- 
less know  this  young  man  Cupid,  whom  I  have 
nourished  with  mine  own  hand,  whose  raging  flames 
of  his  first  youth  I  have  thought  best  to  bridle  and 
restrain.  It  sufficeth  in  that  he  is  defamed  in  every 
place  for  his  adulterous  living  and  all  manner  of  vice ; 
wherefore  all  such  occasion  ought  to  be  taken  away 
and  his  boyish  wantonness  tied  up  in  the  bonds  of 
marriage :  he  hath  chosen  a  maiden  that  favoureth 
him  well,  and  hath  bereaved  her  of  her  virginity  ;  let 
him  have  her  still  and  possess  her,  and  in  the 
embrace  of  Psyche  take  his  own  pleasure.'  Then  he 
turned  unto  Venus,  and  said :  '  And  you,  my 
daughter,  take  you  no  care,  neither  fear  the  dis- 
honour of  your  progeny  and  estate,  neither  have 
regard  in  that  it  is  a  mortal  marriage,  for  I  will  see 
to  it  that  this  marriage  be  not  unequal,  but  just, 
lawful,  and  legitimate  by  the  law  civil.'  Incon- 
tinently after,  Jupiter  commanded  Mercury  to  bring 
up  Psyche  into  the  palace  of  heaven.  And  then 
he  took  a  pot  of  immortality,  and  said :  '  Hold, 
Psyche,  and  drink  to  the  end  thou  mayest  be 
immortal,  and  that  Cupid  may  never  depart  from 
thee,  but  be  thine  everlasting  husband.' 

"  By  and  by  the  great  banquet  and  marriage  feast 
was  sumptuously  prepared.  Cupid  sat  down  in  the 
uppermost  seat  with  his  dear  spouse  between  his 
arms  :  Juno  likewise  with  Jupiter  and  all  the  other 
gods  in  order  :  Ganymedes,  the  rustic  boy,  his  own 
butler,  filled  the  pot  of  Jupiter,  and  Bacchus  served 
the  rest :  their  drink  was  nectar,  the  wine  of  the 
gods.  Vulcanus  prepared  supper,  the  Hours  decked 
up  the  house  with  roses  and  other  sweet  flowers,  the 


bant  balsama,  Musae  quoque  canora  personabant, 
Apollo  caiitavit  ad  citharam,  Venus  suavi  musicae 
superingressa  formosa  saltavit :  scaena  sibi  sic  con- 
cinnata,  ut  Musae  quidem  chorum  canerent  et  tibias 
inflarent,  Satyrus  et  Paniscus  ad  fistulam  dicerent.  Sic 
rite  Psyche  convenit  in  manum  Cupidinis,  et  nascitur 
illis  maturo  partu  filia,  quam  Voluptatem  nominamus." 

25  Sic  captivae  puellae  delira  et  temulenta  ilia  narra- 
bat  anicula  ;  sed  astans  ego  non  procul  dolebam  me- 
hercules  quod  pugillares  et  stilum  non  habebam,  qui 
tarn   bellam    fabellam  praenotareni.     Ecce  confecto 
nescioquo   gravi  proelio  latrones  adveniunt  onusti ; 
nonnulli  tamen,  immo  promptiores,  vulneratis  domi 
relictis  et  plagas  recurantibus,  ipsi  ad  reliquas  occul- 
tatas  in  quadam  spelunca  sarcinas,  ut  aiebant,  pro- 
ficisci  gestiunt ;  prandioque  raptim  tuburcinato,  me 
et  equum  meum  vectores  rerum  illarum  futures  fusti- 
bus  exinde  tundentes  producunt  in  viam,  multisque 
clivis  et  anfractibus  fatigatos  prope  ipsam  vesperam 
perducunt   ad    quampiam    speluncam,    unde    multis 
onustos  rebus  rursunx,  ne  breviculo  quidem  tempore 
refectos  ociter  reducunt,  tantaque  trepidatione  fes- 
tinabant,  ut  me  plagis  multis  obtundentes  propellen- 
tesque  super  lapidem  propter  viam  positum  deicerent: 
unde  crebris  aeque  ingestis  ictibus  crure  dextero  et 
ungula  sinistrame  debilitatum  aegre  ad  exsurgendum 

26  compellunt,  et  unus  "  Quousque  "  inquit  "  Ruptum 
istum  asellum,  nunc  etiam  claudum^  frustra  pasce- 
mus  ?  ",  et  alius  :  "  Quid  quod  et  pessimo  pede  domum 
nostram  accessit,  nee  quicquam  idonei  lucri  exinde 


Graces  threw  about  balm,  the  Muses  sang  with  sweet 
harmony,  Apollo  turned  pleasantly  to  the  harp,  fair 
Venus  danced  finely  to  the  music,  and  the  entertain- 
ment was  so  ordained  that  while  the  Muses  sang  in 
quire,  Satyrus  and  Paniscus  played  on  their  pipes  : 
and  thus  Psyche  was  married  to  Cupid,  and  after  in 
due  time  she  was  delivered  of  a  child,  whom  we  call 

This  the  trifling  and  drunken  old  woman  declared 
to  the  captive  maiden,  but  I,  poor  ass,  not  standing 
far  off,  was  not  a  little  sorry  in  that  I  lacked  pen  and 
book  to  write  so  worthy  a  tale  ;  when  by  and  by  the 
thieves  came  home  laden  with  treasure,  and  many  of 
them  which  were  of  strongest  courage  being  wounded  : 
then  (leaving  behind  such  as  were  lame  and  hurt 
to  heal  and  air  themselves)  said  they  would  return 
back  again  to  fetch  the  rest  of  their  pillage  which 
they  had  hidden  in  a  certain  cave.  So  they  snatched 
up  their  dinner  greedily,  and  brought  forth  me  and 
my  horse  into  the  way  to  carry  those  goods,  and  beat 
us  before  them  with  staves,  and  about  night  (after 
that  we  were  weary  by  passing  over  many  hills  and 
dales)  we  came  to  a  great  cave,  where  they  laded  us 
with  mighty  burdens,  and  would  not  suffer  us  to 
refresh  ourselves  any  season,  but  brought  us  again  in 
our  way,  and  hied  very  fast  homeward  ;  and  what 
with  their  haste  and  cruel  stripes  wherewith  they 
did  belabour  and  drive  me,  I  fell  down  upon  a  stone 
by  the  highway  side.  Then  they  beat  me  pitifully 
in  lifting  me  up,  hurting  my  right  thigh  and  my 
left  hoof,  and  one  of  them  said  :  "  How  long  shall  we 
continue  to  feed  this  evil-favoured  ass  that  is  now 
also  lame  ?  "  Another  said  :  "  Since  the  time  we  had 
him  first  he  never  did  any  good,  and  1  think  he  came 
into  our  house  with  evil  luck  ;  for  we  have  had  great 


cepimus  sed  vulnera  et  fortissimorum  occisiones." 
Alius  iterum  :  "  Certe  ego  cum  primum  sarcinas  istas 
quamquam  invitus  pertulerit,  protinus  eum  vulturiis 
gratissimum  pabulum  futurum  praecipitabo." 

Dum  secum  mitissimi  homines  altercant  de  mea 
nece,  iam  et  domum  perveneramus,  nam  timor  ungu- 
las  mihi  alas  fecerat.  Turn  quae  ferebamus  amoliti 
properiter,  nulla  salutis  nostrae  cura  sed  ne  meae 
quidem  necis  habita,  comitibus  adscitis  qui  vulnerati 
remanserant,  dudum  recurrunt  reliqua  laturi l  taedio, 
ut  aiebant,  nostrae  tarditatis.  Nee  me  tamen  medio- 
cris  carpebat  scrupulus  contemplatione  comminatae 
mihi  mortis,  et  ipse  mecum :  "  Quid  stas,  Luci,  vel 
quid  iam  novissimum  expectas  ?  Mors,  et  haec 
acerbissima,  decreto  latronum  tibi  comparata  est. 
Nee  magno  conatu  res  indiget ;  vides  istas  rupinas 
proximas  et  praeacutas  in  his  prominentes  silices, 
quae  te  penetrantes  antequam  decideris,  membratim 
dissipabunt.  Nam  et  ilia  ipsa  praeclara  magia  tua 
vultum  laboresque  tibi  tantum  asini,  verum  corium 
non  asini  crassum  sed  hirudinis  tenue  membranulum 
circumdedit.  Quin  igitur  masculum  tandem  sumis 
animum  tuaeque  saluti  dum  licet  consulis  ?  Habes 
summam  opportunitatem  fugae,  dum  latrones  absunt 
An  custodiam  anus  semimortuae  formidabis,  quam 
licet  claudi  pedis  tui  calce  unica  finire  poteris  ?  Sed 
quo  gentium  capessetur  fuga  vel  hospitium  quis  dabit  ? 
Haec  quidem  inepta  et  prorsus  asinina  cogitatio  :  quis 
enim  viantium  vectorem  suum  non  libenter  auferat 


27      Et  alacri  statim  nisu  lorum,  quo  fueram  destinatus, 
abrumpo,  meque  quadripedi  cursu  proripio,  nee  tamen 

1  The  MSS  have  recurrunt  relatori  taedio.  Van  der  Vliet 
proposed  reliqua  ipsi  laturi  for  the  middle  word,  and  I  have 
followed  him,  omitting  the  ipsi. 



wounds  since,  and  loss  of  our  valiant  captains." 
Another  said :  « As  soon  as  he  has  brought  un- 
willingly home  his  burden,  I  will  surely  throw  him 
out  upon  the  mountain  to  be  a  prey  for  vultures." 

While  these  gentle  men  reasoned  together  of  my 
death,  we  fortuned  to  come  home,  for  the  fear  that 
I  was  in  caused  my  feet  to  turn  into  wings.  After 
that  we  were  discharged  of  our  burdens,  they  took 
no  account  of  our  needs,  nor  even  of  my  slaying ; 
they  fetched  their  fellows  that  lay  wounded,  and 
returned  again  to  bring  the  rest  of  the  things,  by 
reason  (as  they  said)  of  our  great  tardiness  and  slow- 
ness by  the  way.  Then  was  I  brought  into  no  small 
anguish,  when  I  perceived  my  death  prepared  before 
my  face,  and  I  communed  with  myself :  "  Why 
standest  thou  still,  Lucius  ?  Why  dost  thou  look 
for  thy  death  ?  Knowest  thou  not  that  the  thieves 
have  cruelly  ordained  to  slay  thee,  and  they  shall 
find  it  easy  enough?  Seest  thou  not  these  sharp 
precipices  and  pointed  flints  which  shall  bruise  and 
tear  thee  in  pieces  or  ever  thou  comest  to  the  bottom 
of  them  ?  Thy  gentle  magician  hath  not  only  given 
thee  the  shape  and  travail  of  an  ass,  but  also  a  skin 
so  soft  and  tender  as  it  were  of  a  leech.  Why  dost 
thou  not  take  a  man's  courage  and  run  away  to  save 
thy  life  ?  Now  hast  thou  the  best  occasion  of  flight 
while  the  thieves  are  from  home.  Art  thou  afraid 
of  the  old  woman,  which  is  more  than  half  dead, 
whom  with  a  stripe  of  thy  heel,  though  lame,  thou 
mayest  easily  dispatch?  .But  whither  shall  I.  fly? 
What  lodging  shall  I  seek  ?  Behold  an  assy  cogita- 
tion of  mine ;  for  who  is  he  that  passes  by  the  way 
and  will  not  gladly  take  up  a  beast  to  carry  him  ?  " 

Then  while  I  devised  these  things,  I  broke  sud- 
denly the  halter  wherewith  I  was  tied,  and  ran  away 



acutulae  anus  milvinos  oculos  effugere  potui :  nam 
ubi  me  conspexit  absolutum,  capta  super  sexum  et 
aetatem  audacia  lorum  prehendit  ac  me  deducere  ac 
revocare  contendit.  Nee  tamen  ego,  memor  exitia- 
bilis  propositi  latronum,  pietate  ulla  commoveor,  sed 
incussis  in  earn  posteriorum  pedum  calcibus  protinus 
applodo  terrae.  At  ilia,  quamvis  humi  prostrata,  loro 
tamen  tenaciter  inhaerebat,  ut  me  procurrentem  ali- 
quantisper  tractu  sui  sequeretur,  et  occipit  statim 
clamosis  ululatibus  auxilium  validioris  manus  im- 
plorare.  Sed  fruslra  fletibus  cassum  tumultum 
commovebat,  quippe  cum  nullus  adforet  qui  sup- 
petias  ei  ferre  posset,  nisi  sola  ilia  virgo  captiva. 
Quae  vocis  excitu  procurrens  videt  Hercule  memo- 
randi  spectaculi  scaenam,  non  tauro  sed  asino 
dependentem  Dircen  aniculam,  sumptaque  constantia 
virili  facinus  audet  pulcherrimum.  Extorto  etenim 
loro  manibus  eius  rne  placidis  gannitibus  ab  impetu 
revocatum  naviter  inscendit  et  sic  ad  cursum  rursum 
28  incitat.  Ego  simul  voluntariae  fugae  voto  et  liber- 
andae  virginis  studio,  sed  et  plagarum  suasu,  quae  me 
saepicule  commonebant,  equestri  celeritate  quadripedi 
cursu  solum  replaudens  virgini  delicatas  voculas  ad- 
hinnire  temptabam.  Sed  et  scabendi  dorsi  mei  simu- 
latione  nonnunquam  obliquata  cervice  pedes  decoros 
puellae  basiabam. 



with  all  my  four  feet l :  howbeit  I  could  not  escape 
the  kite's  eyes  of  the  old  woman,  for  when  she  saw 
me  loose  she  ran  after  me,  and  with  more  audacity 
than  becometh  her  kind  and  age,  caught  me  by  the 
halter  and  thought  to  pull  me  home  ;  but  I,  not 
forgetting  the  cruel  purposes  of  the  thieves,  was 
moved  with  small  pity,  for  I  kicked  her  with  my 
hinder  heels  to  the  ground.  I  had  well  nigh  slain 
her,  who  (although  she  were  thrown  and  hurled  down) 
yet  held  still  the  halter  and  would  not  let  me  go, 
but  was  for  some  time  dragged  along  the  ground  by 
me  in  my  flight.  Then  she  cried  with  a  loud  voice 
and  called  for  succour  of  some  stronger  hand,  but 
she  little  prevailed  because  there  was  no  person  to 
bring  her  help,  save  only  the  captive  gentlewoman, 
who,  hearing  the  voice  of  the  old  woman,  came  out 
to  see  what  the  matter  was  and  perceived  a  scene 
worth  telling,  a  new  Dirce  2  hanging,  not  to  a  bull, 
but  to  an  ass.  Then  she  took  a  good  courage  and 
performed  a  deed  worthy  of  a  man  :  she  wrested 
the  halter  out  of  her  hands,  and  (entreating  me  with 
gentle  words)  stopped  me  in  my  flight  and  got  upon 
my  back  and  drove  me  to  my  running  again.  Then 
I  began  to  run,  both  that  I  might  escape  and  to  save 
the  maiden,  and  she  gently  kicked  me  forward,  in  so 
much  that  beneath  her  frequent  urging  I  seemed  to 
scour  away  like  a  horse,  galloping  with  my  four  feet 
upon  the  ground.  And  when  the  gentlewoman  did 
speak  I  would  answer  her  with  my  braying,  and 
oftentimes  (under  colour  to  rub  my  back)  I  would 
turn  back  my  neck  and  sweetly  kiss  her  tender  feet. 

1  Quadripcdi  curxu  seems  to  be  a  phrase  for  galloping,  as 
in  modern  Greek  errd  rfofftpa. 

2  Dirce  was  killed  by  being  tied  by  her  hair  to  a  wild  bull  in 
revenge  for  her  similar  cruelty  to  her  rival  Antiope. 

T  289 


Tune  ilia  suspirans  altius,  caelumque  sollicito  vultu 
petens  "  Vos,"  inquit  "  Superi,  tandem  meis  su- 
premis  periculis  opera  facite,  et  tu,  Fortuna  durior* 
iam  saevire  desiste :  sat  tibi  miseris  istis  cruciatibus 
meis  litatum  est.  Tuque,  praesidium  meae  libertatis 
meaeque  salutis,  si  me  domum  pervexeris  incolumem 
parentibusque  et  formoso  proco  reddideris,  quas  tibi 
gratias  perhibebo,  quos  honores  habebo,  quos  cibos 
exhibebo  ?  Iam  primum  iubam  istam  tuam  probe 
pectinatam  meis  virginalibus  monilibus  adornabo, 
frontem  vero  crispatam  prius  decoriter  discriminabo 
caudaeque  setas  incuria  lavacri  congestas  et  horridas, 
cornptas  diligenter  mollibo,1  bullisque  te  multis  aureis 
inoculatum,  velut  stellis  sidereis  relucentem,  et 
gaudiis  popularium  pomparum  ovantem,  sinu  serico 
progestans  nucleos  et  edulia  mitiora,  te  meum  sospita- 
29  torem  cotidie  saginabo.  Sed  nee  inter  cibos  delicatos 
et  otium  profundum  vitaeque  totius  beatitudinem 
deerit  tibi  dignitas  gloriosa :  narn  memoriam  praesentis 
fortunae  meae  divinaeque  providentiae  perpetua  testa- 
tione  signabo,  et  depictam  in  tabula  fugae  praesentis 
imaginem  meae  domus  atrio  dedicabo.  Visetur  et  in 
fabulis  audietur  doctorumque  stilis  rudis  perpetua- 
bitur  historia  '  Asino  vectore  virgo  regia  fugiens 
captivitatem.'  Accedes  antiquis  et  ipse  miraculis  et 

1  The  MSS  are  here  very  uncertain  and  have  been  altered 
and  erased.  Mollibois  Leo's  suggestion,  which  I  combine  with 
the  oomptas  {MSS  compta)  of  Kronenberg. 



Then  she,  fetching  a  sigh  from  the  bottom  of  her 
heart,  lifted  up  her  eyes  unto  the  heavens,  saying : 
"  O  sovereign  gods,  deliver  me,  if  it  be  your  pleasure, 
from  these  present  dangers  ;  and  thou,  cruel  fortune, 
cease  thy  wrath ;  let  the  sorrow  suffice  thee  which  I 
have  already  sustained.  And  thou,  little  ass,  that 
art  the  occasion  of  my  safety  and  liberty,  if  thou 
canst  once  render  me  safe  and  sound  to  my  parents, 
and  to  that  comely  one  that  so  greatly  desireth  to 
have  me  to  his  wife,  thou  shalt  see  what  thanks  I 
will  give  thee,  with  what  honour  I  will  reward  thee, 
and  how  I  will  feed  thee.  First  I  will  finely  comb 
thy  mane  and  adorn  it  with  my  maiden  necklaces, 
and  then  I  will  bravely  dress  the  hair  of  thy  fore- 
head, and  tie  up  thy  rugged  tail  trimly,  whose 
bristles  are  now  ragged  and  matted  by  want  of  care  : 
I  will  deck  thee  round  about  with  golden  trappings 
and  tassels,  in  such  sort  that  thou  shalt  glitter  like 
the  stars  of  the  sky,  and  shalt  go  in  triumph  amid 
the  applause  of  the  people  :  I  will  bring  thee  every 
day  in  my  silken  apron  the  kernels  of  nuts,  and  will 
pamper  thee  up  with  dainty  delights ;  I  will  set 
store  by  thee,  as  by  one  that  is  the  preserver  of  my 
life.  Finally,  thou  shalt  lack  no  manner  of  thing, 
and  amongst  thy  glorious  fare,  thy  great  ease,  and 
the  bliss  of  thy  life,  thou  shalt  not  be  destitute  of 
dignity,  for  thou  shalt  be  chronicled  perpetually 
in  memory  of  my  present  fortune,  and  the  providence 
divine.  All  the  whole  history  of  this  our  present 
flight  shall  be  painted  upon  the  wall  of  our  house : 
thou  shalt  be  renowned  throughout  all  the  world, 
and  this  tale  (though  rude)  shall  be  registered  in  the 
books  of  doctors,  how  an  ass  saved  the  life  of  a  young 
maiden,  a  princess,  that  was  a  captive  amongst 
thieves.  Thou  shalt  be  numbered  amongst  the 



iam  credemus  exemplo  tuae  veritatis  et  Phrixum 
arieti  supernatasse  et  Arionem  delphinum  guber- 
nasse  et  Europam  tauro  supercubasse.  Quod  si  vere 
lupiter  mugivit  in  bovem,  potest  in  asino  meo  latere 
aliqui  vel  vultus  hominis  vel  fades  deorum." 

Dum  haec  identidem  puella  replicat  votisque  cre- 
bros  intermiscet  suspiritus,  ad  quoddam  pervenimus 
trivium,  unde  me  arrepto  capistro  dirigere  dextrorsum 
magnopere  gestiebat,  quod  ad  parentis  eius  ea  scilicet 
iretur  via.  Sed  ego  gnarus  latrones  iliac  ad  reliquas 
commeasse  praedas,  renitebar  firmiter  atque  sic  in 
animo  meo  tacitus  expostulabam  :  "  Quid  facis,  infelix 
puella  ?  Quid  agis  ?  Cur  festinas  ad  Orcum  ?  Quid 
meis  pedibus  facere  contendis  ?  Non  enim  te  tantum, 
verum  etiam  me  perditum  ibis."  Sic  nos  diversa 
tendentes  et  in  causa  finali  de  proprietate  soli,  immo 
viae  herciscundae  contendentes,  rapinis  suis  onusti 
coram  deprehendunt  ipsi  latrones  et  ad  lunae  splen- 
dorem  iam  hide  longius  cognitos  risu  maligno  salu- 
30  tant ;  et  unus  e  numero  sic  appellat :  "  Quorsum 
istam  festinanti  vestigio  lucubratis  viam  nee  noctis 
intempestae  Manes  Larvasque  formidatis  ?  An  tu, 
probissima  puella,  parentes  tuos  intervisere  propera- 
bas  ?  Sed  nos  et  solitudini  tuae  praesidium  praesta- 
bimus  et  ad  parentes  tuos  iter  monstrabimus,"  et 
unus  manu  secutus  prehenso  loro  retrorsum  me  cir- 
cumtorquet,  nee  baculi  nodosi  quod  gerebat  stietis 
ictibus  temperat.  ^Tunc  ingratis  ad  promptum  re- 
currens  exitium  reminiscor  doloris  ungulae  et  occipio 

ancient  miracles :  we  shall  believe  by  the  example 
of  this  truth  that  Phrixus  saved  himself  from  drown- 
ing upon  a  ram,  Arion  escaped  upon  a  dolphin,  and 
that  Europa  rode  upon  a  bull.  If  Jupiter  trans- 
formed himself  into  a  lowing  bull,  why  may  it  not  be 
that  under  shape  of  this  ass  is  hidden  the  figure  of  a 
man,  or  some  power  divine  ?  " 

While  that  the  virgin  did  thus  mix  sorrowful  sighs 
with  her  hopes  and  prayers  we  fortuned  to  come  to 
a  place  where  three  ways  did  meet,  and  she  took  me 
by  the  halter  and  would  have  me  turn  on  the  right 
hand  to  her  father's  house,  but  I  (knowing  that  the 
thieves  were  gone  that  way  to  fetch  the  residue 
of  their  pillage)  resisted  with  my  head  as  much  as 
I  might,  saying  within  myself:  "  What  wilt  thou  do, 
unhappy  maiden?  Why  wouldest  thou  go  so  will- 
ingly to  Hell  ?  Why  wilt  thou  run  into  destruction 
in  despite  of  my  feet  ?  Why  dost  thou  seek  thine 
own  harm  and  mine  likewise  ?  "  And  while  we  two 
strove  together  like  men  striving  at  law  about  the 
division  of  land,  or  rather  about  some  right  of  way, 
the  thieves  returned  laden  with  their  prey,  and  per- 
ceived us  afar  off  by  the  light  of  the  moon  :  and 
after  they  had  known  us  they  laughed  despitefully, 
and  one  of  them  began  to  say :  "  Whither  go  you  so 
hastily  ?  Be  you  not  afraid  of  spirits  and  ghosts  of 
the  night  ?  And  you  (you  harlot)  do  you  go  to  see 
your  parents  ?  Come  on,  we  will  bear  you  company 
for  safety's  sake  and  shew  you  the  way  to  your 
parents."  And  therewithal  one  took  me  by  the 
halter  and  drove  me  back  again,  beating  me  cruelly 
with  a  great  staff  that  he  had,  full  of  knobs ;  then  I 
returning  against  my  will  to  my  ready  destruction, 
and  remembering  the  grief  of  my  hoof,  began  to 
shake  my  head  and  to  wax  lame,  but  he  that  led  me 



nutanti  capite  claudicare :  sed  "  Ecce  "  inquit  ille 
qui  me  retraxerat,  "  Rursum  titubas  et  vacillas  et 
putres  isti  tui  pedes  fugere  possunt,  ambulare  nes- 
ciunt !  At  paulo  ante  pinnatam  Pegasi  vincebas 
celeritatem."  Dum  sic  mecum  fustem  quatiens 
benign  us  iocatur  comes,  iam  domus  eorum  extremam 
loricam  perveneramus,  et  ecce  de  quodam  ramo 
procerae  cupressus  induta  laqueum  anus  ilia  pende- 
bat ;  quam  quidern  detractam  protinus  cum  suo  sibi 
funiculo  devinctam  dedere  praecipitem  puellaque 
statim  distenta  viiiculis  cenam,  quam  postuma  dili- 
gentia  praeparaverat  infelix  anicula,  ferinis  invadunt 

3 1  Ac  dum  avida  voracitate  cuncta  contruncant,  iam 
incipiunt  de  nostra  poena  suaque  vindicta  secum 
considerare.  Et  utpote  in  coetu  turbulento  variae 
fuere  sententiae,  ut  primus  vivam  cremari  censeret 
puellam,  secundus  bestiis  obici  suaderet,  tertius  pati- 
Imlo  suffigi  iube.ret,  quartus  tormentis  excarnificari 
praeciperet ;  certe  calculo  cunctorum  utcumque  mors 
ei  fuerat  destinata.  Tune  unus  omnium  sedato 
tumultu,  placido  sermone  sic  orsus  est :  "  Nee  sectae 
collegii  nee  mansuetudini  singulorum  ac  ne  meae 
quidem  modestiae  congruit  pati  vos  ultra  modum 
delictique  saevire  terminum,  nee  feras  nee  eruces  nee 
ignes  nee  tormenta  ac  ne  mortis  quidem  maturatae 
festinas  tenebras  accersere.  Meis  itaque  consiliis 
auscultantes  vitam  puellae,  sed  quam  meretur,  largi- 



by  the  halter  said:  "What,  dost  thou  stumble? 
Canst  thou  not  go  ?  These  rotten  feet  of  thine  can 
run  well  enough,  but  they  cannot  walk  ;  thou  couldst 
mince  it  finely  even  now  with  the  gentlewoman,  so 
that  thou  didst  seem  to  pass  the  horse  Pegasus  in 
swiftness."  In  jesting  and  saying  these  kindly 
words  they  beat  me  again  with  a  great  staff,  and 
when  we  were  come  almost  home  we  saw  the  old 
woman  hanging  by  a  noose  upon  a  bough  of  a  cypress- 
tree  ;  then  one  of  them  cut  her  down  where  she 
hanged,  together  with  her  rope,  and  cast  her  into 
the  bottom  of  a  great  ditch.  After  this  they  bound 
the  maiden  in  chains  and  fell  greedily  to  their 
victuals  which  the  miserable  old  woman  had  provided 
for  them  to  eat  after  she  was  dead. 

Now  while  they  devoured  all  very  gluttonously 
they  began  to  devise  with  themselves  of  our  death 
and  how  they  might  be  revenged.  Divers  were 
the  opinions  of  this  divers  number,  such  as  might 
well  be  in  a  turbulent  company :  the  first  said  that 
he  thought  best  the  maid  should  be  burned  alive  ;  the 
second  said  she  should  be  thrown  out  to  wild  beasts  ; 
the  third  said  she  should  be  hanged  upon  a  gibbet ; 
the  fourth  said  she  should  be  flayed  alive  with  tor- 
tures :  certainly  was  the  death  of  the  poor  maiden 
decided  by  the  vote  of  them  all.  But  one  of  the 
thieves  did  make  them  all  to  be  silent,  and  then  very 
quietly  speak  in  this  manner  :  "It  is  not  convenient 
unto  the  oath  of  our  company,  nor  to  the  clemency 
of  each  person,  nor  indeed  to  my  own  gentleness,  to 
suffer  you  to  wax  more  cruel  than  the  quality  of  the 
offence  doth  merit ;  for  I  would  that  she  should  not 
be  hanged,  nor  burned,  nor  thrown  to  wild  beasts, 
nor  even  that  she  die  any  sudden  death  ;  but  hearken 
to  my  counsel,  and  grant  her  life,  but  life  according 
*  295 


mini.  Nee  Vus  meraoria  deseruit  utique  quid  iamdu- 
dum  decreveritis  de  isto  asino  semper  pigro  quidem 
sed  manducone  summo,  nunc  etiam  mendaci  fictae 
debilitatis  et  virginalis  fugae  sequestro  ministroque. 
Hunc  igitur  iugulare  crastino  placeat,  totisque  vacue- 
facto  praecordiis  per  mediam  alvum  nudam  virginem, 
quam  praetulit  nobis,  insuere,  ut  sola  facie  praemi- 
nente  ceterum  corpus  puellae  nexu  ferino  coerceat, 
tune  super  aliquod  saxum  scruposum  insiticium  et 
fartilem  asinum  exponere  et  soils  ardentis  vaporibus 
tradere.  Sic  enim  cuncta,  quae  recte  statuistis,  ambo 
sustinebunt;  et  mortem  asinus  quam  quidem  meruit, 
et  ilia  morsus  ferarum,  cum  vermes  membra  lania- 
bunt,  et  ignis  flagrantiam,  cum  sol  nimis  caloribus 
inflammarit  uterum,  et  patibuli  cruciatum,  cum  canes 
et  vultures  intima  protrahent  viscera.  Sed  et  ceteras 
eius  aerumnas  et  tormenta  numerate  :  mortuae  bestiae 
ipsa  vivens  ventrem  habitabit,  turn  faetore  nimio 
nares  excruciante 1  aestu  et  mediae  diutinae  letali 
fame  tabescet,  nee  suis  saltern  liberis  manibus  mortem 
sibi  fabricare  poterit."  Talibus  dictis  non  pedibus 
sed  totis  animis  latrones  in  eius  vadunt  sententiam. 
Quam  meis  tarn  magnis  auribus  accipiens,  quid  aliud 
quam  meum  crastinum  deflebam  cadaver  ? 

l  This  word  is  not  in  the  MSS.    Some  participle  governing 
nares  seems  to  hare  dropped  out. 


to  her  desert.  You  know  well  what  you  have 
determined  already  of  this  dull  ass,  that  always 
eateth  more  than  he  is  worth,  and  now  who  feigneth 
lameness,  and  that  was  the  cause  and  helper  of  the 
flying  away  of  the  maid.  My  mind  is  that  he  shall 
be  slain  to-morrow,  and  when  all  the  guts  and  en- 
trails of  his  body  are  taken  out  let  the  maid,  whom 
he  hath  preferred  to  us,  be  stript  and  sewn  into  his 
belly,  so  that  only  her  head  be  without,  but  the  rest 
of  her  body  be  enclosed  within  the  beast.  Then  let 
us  lay  this  stuffed  ass  upon  a  great  stone  against  the 
broiling  heat  of  the  sun  ;  so  they  shall  both  sustain 
all  the  punishments  which  you  have  ordained:  for 
first  the  ass  shall  be  slain  as  he  hath  deserved  ;  and 
she  shall  have  her  members  torn  and  gnawed  with 
wild  beasts,  when  she  is  bitten  and  rent  with  worms  ; 
she  shall  endure  the  pain  of  the  fire,  when  the  broil- 
ing heat  of  the  sun  shall  scorch  and  parch  the  belly 
of  the  ass ;  she  shall  abide  the  gallows,  when  the 
dogs  and  vultures  shall  drag  out  her  innermost 
bowels.  I  pray  you  number  all  the  torments  which 
she  shall  suffer  :  first,  she  shall  dwell  alive  within  the 
paunch  of  the  ass  ;  secondly,  her  nostrils  shall  receive 
the  carrion  stink  of  the  beast ;  thirdly,  she  shall  die 
for  heat  and  hunger,  and  she  shall  find  no  means  to 
rid  herself  from  her  pains  by  slaying  herself,  for  her 
hands  shall  be  sewn  up  within  the  skin  of  the  ass." 
This  being  said,  all  the  thieves  consented  not  by  their 
votes  x  only,  but  with  their  whole  hearts  to  the 
sentence  ;  and  when  I  (poor  ass)  heard  with  my  gn/at 
ears  and  understood  all  their  device  I  did  nothing 
else  save  bewail  and  lament  my  dead  carcass,  which 
should  be  handled  in  such  sort  on  the  next  morrow. 

1  Lit.   "  by   the   feet " — a  technical  term   takeu  from  the 
voting-lobbies  of  the  Senate. 


1  UT  primum  tenebris  abiectis  dies  inalbebat  et 
candidum  soils  curriculum  cuncta  collustrabat, 
quidam  de  numero  latronum  pervenit ;  sic  enim 
mutuae  salutationis  officium  indicabat.  Is  in  primo 
speluncae  aditu  residens  et  ex  anhelitu  recepto 
spiritu  tale  collegio  suo  nuntium  facit :  "  Quod  ad 
domum  Milonis  Hypatini  quam  proxime  diripuimus 
pertinet,  discussa  sollicitudine  iam  possumus  esse 
securi.  Postquam  vos  enim  fortissimis  viribus  cunctis 
ablatis  castra  nostra  remeastis^  immixtus  ego  turbelis 
popularium  dolentique  atque  indignant!  similis  arbi- 
trabar  super  investigatione  facti  cuiusmodi  consilium 
caperent,  et  an  et  quatenus  latrones  placeret  inquiri, 
renuntiaturus  vobis,  uti  mandaveratis,  omnia.  Nee 
argumentis  dubiis  sed  rationibus  probabilibus  con- 
gruo  cunctae  multitudinis  consensu  nescioqui  Lucius 
auctor  manifestus  facinoris  postulabatur,  qui  proximis 
diebus  fictis  commendaticiis  litteris  Miloni  sese  virum 
commentitus  bonum  artius  conciliaverat,  ut  etiam 



As  soon  as  the  day  shone  bright  and  night  was  past, 
and  the  clear  chariot  of  the  sun  had  spread  his  bright 
beams  on  every  coast,  came  one  of  the  company  of 
the  thieves  (for  so  his  and  their  greeting  did  declare)  ; 
who  at  his  first  entry  into  the  cave  (after  he  had 
breathed  himself  and  was  able  to  speak)  told  these 
tidings  unto  his  companions  in  this  sort :  "  Sirs,  as 
touching  the  house  of  Milo  of  Hypata,  which  we 
forcibly  entered  and  ransacked  the  last  day,  we  may 
put  away  all  fear,  and  doubt  nothing  at  all ;  for  after 
that  you  by  force  and  arms  had  spoiled  and  taken 
away  all  things  in  the  house,  and  so  returned  hither 
unto  our  cave,  I  (thrusting  in  amongst  the  press  of 
the  people  and  shewing  myself  as  though  I  were  sad 
and  sorrowful  for  the  mischance)  consulted  with  them 
for  the  bolting  out  of  the  matter,  whether  and  how 
far  they  would  devise  for  the  apprehension  of  the 
thieves,  to  the  intent  I  might  learn  and  see  all  that 
was  done  to  make  relation  thereof  unto  you,  as  you 
willed  me,  The  whole  fact  at  length  by  manifest 
and  evident  proofs,  as  also  by  the  common  opinion 
and  judgement  of  all  the  people,  was  laid  to  one 
Lucius'  charge,  as  manifest  author  of  this  committed 
robbery,  who,  a  few  days  before,  by  false  and  forged 
letters  and  coloured  honesty,  had  feigned  himself  to 
be  a  true  man  and  had  gotten  himself  so  far  in  favour 
with  this  Milo  that  he  entertained  him  into  his  house 



hospitio  susceptus  inter  familiares  intimos  haberetur, 
plusculisque  ibidem  diebus  demoratus  falsis  amoribus 
ancillae  Milonis  animum  irrepens  ianuae  claustra 
sedulo  exploraverat  et  ipsa  membra,  in  quis  omne 
2  patrimonium  condi  solebat,  curiose  perspexerat.  Nee 
exiguum  scelerati  monstrabatur  indicium,  quippe 
cum  eadem  nocte  sub  ipso  flagitii  momento  idem 
profugisset  nee  exinde  usquam  compareret ;  nam  et 
praesidium  fugae,  quo  velocius  frustratis  insecutoribus 
procul  ac  procul  abderet  sese,  eidem  facile  suppedi- 
tasse  :  equum  namque  ilium  suum  candidum  vectorem 
futurum  duxisse  secum.  Plane  servum  eius  ibidem  in 
hospitio  repertum  scelerum  consiliorumque  herilium 
futurum  indicem  per  magistratus  in  publicam  custo- 
diam  receptum,  et  altera  die  tormentis  vexatum  pluri- 
bus  ac  paene  ad  ultimam  mortem  excarnificatum  nil 
quicquam  rerum  talium  esse  confessum,  missos  tamen 
in  patriam  Lucii  illius  multos  numero  qui  reum 
poenas  daturum  sceleris  inquirerent." 

Haec  eo  enarrante,  veteris  fortunae  et  illius  beati 
Lucii  praesentisque  aerumnae  et  infelicis  asini  facta 
comparatione  medullitus  ingemebam,  subiitque  me 
non  de  nihilo  veteris  priscaeque  doctrinae  viros  finx- 
isse  ac  pronuntiasse  caecam  et  prorsus  exoculatam 
esse  Fortunam,  quae  semper  suas  opes  ad  malos  et 
indignos  conferat,  nee  unquam  iudicio  quemquam 
mortalium  eligat,  immo  vero  cum  iis  potissimum  de- 
versetur,  quos  procul  si  videret,  fugere  deberet, 
quodque  cunctis  est  extremius,  varias  opiniones, 

and  received  him  as  chief  of  his  familiar  friends; 
which  Lucius,  after  that  he  had  sojourned  there  a 
good  space,  and  won  the  heart  of  Milo's  maid  by 
feigned  love,  did  thoroughly  learn  the  ways  and  doors 
of  all  the  house,  and  curiously  viewed  the  coffers  and 
chests,  wherein  was  laid  the  whole  substance  of  Milo. 
Neither  was  there  small  cause  to  judge  him  culpable, 
since  as  the  very  same  night  as  this  robbery  was 
done,  he  fled  away,  and  could  be  found  in  no  place, 
and  to  the  intent  he  might  clean  escape  and  better 
prevent  such  as  made  hue  and  cry  after  him,  he  took 
his  white  horse  and  galloped  away.  After  this  his 
servant  was  found  in  the  house,  who  was  taken  as 
able  to  give  an  information  of  the  felony  and  escape 
of  his  master,  and  was  committed  to  the  common 
gaol,  and  the  next  day  following  was  cruelly  scourged 
and  tormented  till  he  was  well  nigh  dt-ad,  but  he 
would  confess  nothing  of  the  matter  ;  and  when  they 
could  wrest  or  learn  no  such  thing  of  him,  yet  sent 
they  many  persons  after  towards  Lucius'  country  to 
enquire  him  out,  and  so  take  him  prisoner  to  pay  the 
punishment  of  that  his  crime." 

As  he  declared  these  things,  I  did  greatly  lament 
with  myself  to  think  of  mine  old  and  pristine  estate, 
and  what  felicity  I  was  sometimes  in,  in  comparison 
to  the  misery  that  I  presently  sustained,  being 
changed  into  a  miserable  ass.  Then  had  I  no  small 
occasion  to  remember  how  the  old  and  ancient 
writers  did  feign  and  affirm  that  fortune  was  stark 
blind  and  without  eyes,  because  she  always  be- 
stoweth  her  riches  upon  evil  persons  and  fools,  and 
chooseth  and  favoureth  no  mortal  person  by  judge- 
ment, but  is  always  conversant  especially  with  such 
whom  if  she  could  see,  she  would  more  shun  and 
forsake  ;  yea,  and  which  is  worse,  she  soweth  such 



immo  contrarias  nobis  attribuat,  ut  et  malus  boni  viri 
fama  glorietur  et  innocentissimus  contra  noxio  rumore 
S  plectatur.  Ego  denique  quern  saevissimus  eius  im- 
petus in  bestiam  et  extremae  sortis  quadripedem 
deduxerat,  cuiusque  casus  etiara  quovis  iniquissimo 
dolendus  atque  miserandus  merito  videretur,  crimine 
latrocinii  in  hospitem  mihi  carissiraum  postulabar. 
Quod  crimen  lion  modo  latrocinium,  verum  etiam 
parricidium  quisque  rectius  nominarit,  nee  mihi 
tamen  licebat  causam  meam  defendere  vel  unico 
verbo  saltern  denegare.  Denique  ne  mala  conscientia 
tarn  scelesto  crimini  praesens  viderer  silentio  con- 
sentire,  hoc  tantum  impatientia  perductus  volui 
dicere  "  Non  feci."  Et  verbum  quidem  praecedens 
semel  ac  saepius  immodice  clamitavi,  sequens  vero 
nullo  pacto  disserere  potui,  sed  in  prima  remansi  voce, 
et  identidem  boavi  "  Non,  non,"  quamquam  nimia 
rotunditate  pendulas  vibrassem  labias.  Sed  quid  ego 
pluribus  de  Fortunae  scaevitate  conqueror  ?  Quam  * 
nee  istud  puduit,  me  cum  meo  famulo  meoque  vec- 
tore  illo  equo  factum  conservum  atque  coniugem. 
4  Talibus  cogitationibus  fluctuantem  subit  me  ilia 
cura  potior,  qua  statute  consilio  latronum  manibus 
virginis  decretam  me  victimam  recordabar,  ventrem- 
que  crebro  suspiciens  meum  iam  misellam  puellam 
parturibam.  Sed  ille  qui  commodum  falsam  de  me 
notoriam  pertulerat,  expromptis  mille  aureum,  quos 
insutu  laciniae  contexerat  quosque  variis  viatoribus 

1  The   MSS   have   here  quamquam.      The    correction  was 
made  by  Beroaldus. 



diverse  or  rather  contrary  opinions  in  men,  that  the 
wicked  do  glory  with  the  name  of  good,  and  contrary 
the  good  and  innocent  be  detracted  and  slandered  as 
evil.  Furthermore  I,  who  by  her  great  cruelty  was 
turned  into  a  four-footed  ass  in  most  vile  and  abject 
manner,  yea,  and  whose  estate  seemed  worthy  to  be 
lamented  and  pitied  of  the  most  hard  and  stony 
hearts,  was  accused  of  theft  and  robbing  of  my  dear 
host  Milo.  This  villainy  might  rather  be  called 
parricide  than  theft,  yet  might  I  not  defend  mine 
own  cause,  or  deny  the  fact  by  any  one  word,  by 
reason  I  could  not  speak  ;  howbeit  lest  my  conscience 
should  seem  to  accuse  me  of  so  base  a  crime  by  reason 
of  silence,  and  again  being  enforced  by  impatience, 
I  endeavoured  to  speak,  and  fain  would  have  said : 
"  Never  did  I  do  that  deed."  And  verily  the  first 
word,  "  Never,"  I  cried  out  once  or  twice  somewhat 
handsomely,  but  the  residue  I  could  in  no  wise  pro- 
nounce, but  still  remaining  in  one  voice  cried  "  Never, 
never,  never,"  though  I  settled  my  hanging  lips  as 
round  as  I  could  to  speak  the  rest  of  it.  But  why 
should  I  further  complain  of  the  cruelty  of  fortune, 
since  she  was  not  much  ashamed  to  make  me  a 
fellow-slave  and  partner  with  my  servant  and  my 
own  horse  ? 

While  I  pondered  tempestuously  with  myself  all 
these  things,  a  greater  care  came  to  my  remembrance, 
touching  the  death  which  the  thieves  had  devised  for 
me  to  be  an  offering  to  the  ghost  of  the  maiden,  and 
still  as  I  looked  down  to  my  belly,  I  thought  of  the 
poor  gentlewoman  that  should  be  closed  within  me. 
Then  the  thief  which  a  little  before  had  brought  the 
false  news  against  me,  drew  out  of  the  skirt  of  his 
coat  a  thousand  gold  crowns,  which  he  had  rifled 
away  from  such  as  he  met,  and  cast  it  very  honestly, 



detractos,  ut  aiebat,  pro  sua  frugalitate  communi  con- 
ferebat  arcae,  infit  etiam  de  salute  commilitonum 
sollicite  sciscitari ;  cognitoque  quosdam,  immo  vero 
fortissimum  quemque  variis  quidem  sed  impigris 
casibus  oppetisse,  suadet,  tantisper  pacatis  itineri- 
bus  omniumque  proeliorum  servatis  induciis,  inquisi- 
tioni  commilitonum  potius  insisteretur  et  tirocinio 
novae  iuventutis  ad  pristinae  manus  numerum  Martiae 
cohortis  facies  integraretur :  nam  et  invitos  terrore 
compelli  et  volentes  praemio  provocari  posse,  nee 
paucos  humili  servilique  vitae  renuntiantes  ad  instar 
tyrannicae  potestatis  sectam  suam  conferre  malle. 
Se  quoque  iamdudum  pro  sua  parte  quendam  con- 
venisse  hominem  et  statu  procerum  et  aetate  iu- 
venem  et  corpore  vastum  et  manu  strenuum,  eique 
suasisse  ac  denique  persuasisse,  ut  manus  hebetatas 
diutina  pigritia  tandem  referret  ad  frugem  meliorem 
bonoque  secundae  dum  posset  frueretur  valetudinis, 
nee  manum  validam  erogandae  stipi  porrigeret,  sed 
5  hauriendo  potius  exerceret  auro  Talibus  dictis  uni- 
versi  omnes  assensere,  et  ilium  qui  iam  comprobatus 
videretur  adscisci  et  alios  ad  supplendum  numerum 
vestigari  statuunt.  Tune  profectus  et  paululum  com- 
moratus  ille  perducit  immanem  quendam  iuvenem, 
uti  fuerat  pollicitus,  nescio  an  ulli  praesentium  com- 
parandum  (nam  praeter  ceteram  corporis  molem  toto 
vertice  cunctos  antepollebat  et  ei  commodum  lanugo 
malis  inserpebat)  sed  plane  centunculis  disparibus  et 


as  he  said;  into  the  common  treasury.  Then  he  care- 
fully enquired  how  the  residue  of  his  companions  did, 
and  to  him  it  was  declared  that  the  most  valiant  were 
murdered  and  slain  in  divers  manners,  but  very  bravely; 
whereupon  he  persuaded  them  to  remit  all  their  affairs 
a  certain  season,  leaving  the  highways  in  peace,  and 
to  seek  for  other  fellows  to  be  in  their  places,  that 
by  the  exercise  of  new  lads  the  terror  of  their  martial 
band  might  be  brought  again  to  the  old  number ; 
and  he  assured  them  that  such  as  were  unwilling 
might  be  compelled  by  menaces  and  threatenings,  and 
such  as  were  willing  might  be  encouraged  forward 
with  reward  :  further,  he  said  that  there  were  some 
which  (seeing  the  profit  which  they  had)  would  for- 
sake their  base  and  servile  estate  and  rather  be  con- 
tented to  live  like  tyrants  amongst  them.  Moreover, 
he  declared  that  for  his  part  he  had  spoken  with 
a  certain  tall  man,  a  valiant  companion,  but  of  young 
age,  stout  in  body,  and  courageous  in  fight,  whom  he 
had  advised  and  at  last  fully  persuaded  to  exercise 
his  idle  hands,  dull  with  long  slothfulness,  to  his 
greater  profit,  and,  while  he  might,  to  receive  the 
bliss  of  better  fortune,  and  not  to  hold  out  his  sturdy 
arms  to  beg  for  a  penny,  but  rather  to  take  as  much 
gold  and  silver  as  he  would  Then  every  one  con- 
sented that  he  that  seemecl  so  worthy  to  be  their 
companion  should  be  one  of  their  company,  and  that 
they  would  search  for  others  to  make  up  the  residue 
of  the  number  :  whereupon  he  went  out,  and  by  and 
by  returning  again  brought  in  a  tall  young  man,  as  he 
promised,  to  whom  none  of  the  residue  might  be 
compared,  for  he  was  higher  than  they  by  the  head, 
and  of  more  bigness  in  body,  though  the  down  of  his 
beard  had  but  now  begun  to  spread  over  his  cheeks ; 
but  he  was  poorly  apparelled  with  rags  of  divers 



male  consarcinatis  semiamictum,  inter  quos  pectus  et 
venter  crustata  crassitie  reluctabant. 

Sic  introgressus  "  Havete  "  inquit  "  Fortissimo 
deo  Marti  clientes,  mihique  iam  fidi  commilitones, 
et  virum  magnanimae  vivacitatis  volentem  volentes 
accipite,  libentius  vulnera  corpore  excipientem  quam 
auruin  manu  suscipientem,  ipsaque  morte,  quam  for- 
midant  alii,  meliorem.  Nee  me  putetis  egenum  vel 
abiectum,  neve  de  pannulis  istis  virtutes  meas  aesti- 
metis :  nam  praefui  validissimae  manui  totamque 
prorsus  devastavi  Macedonian!.  Ego  sum  praedo 
famosus,  Haemus  ille  Thracius,  cuius  totae  pro- 
vinciae  nomen  horrescunt,  patre  Therone  aeque  la- 
trone  inclito  prognatus,  humano  sanguine  nutritus 
interque  ipsos  manipulos  factionis  educatus,  heres  et 
6  aemulus  virtutis  paternae.  Sed  omnem  pristinam 
sociorum  fortium  multitudinem  magnasque  illas  opes 
exiguo  temporis  amisi  spatio :  nam  procuratorem 
principis  ducenaria  perfunctum,  dehinc  fortuna  tris- 
tiore  decussum,  praetereuntem  deo l  irato  fueram 
aggressus.  Sed  rei  noscendae  carpo  ordinem. 

"  Fuit  quidam  multis  officiis  in  aula  Caesaris  clarus 
atque  conspicuus,  ipsi  etiam  probe  spectatus.  Hunc 
insimulatum  quorundam  astu  proiecit  extorrem  sae- 
xiens  invidia  :  sed  uxor  eius  Plotina,  quaedam  rarae 
fidei  atque  singularis  pudicitiae  femina,  quae  decimo 
partus  stipendio  viri  farniliam  fundaverat,  spretis 
atque  contemptis  urbicae  luxuriae  deliciis,  fugientis 

l  The  MSS  have  something  like  praetereumte  me  orato.  The 
correction  to  praetereuntem  deo  irato  (i.e.  Mars)  is  due  to 



clothes  sewn  ill  together,  in  so  much  that  you  might 
see  all  his  breast  and  strong  belly  naked. 

As  soon  as  he  was  entered  in,  he  said :  "  God 
speed  ye,  soldiers  of  Mars,  and  my  faithful  com- 
panions, I  pray  you  make  me  welcome  as  one  of  your 
band,  and  I  will  ensure  you  that  you  shall  have  a  man 
of  singular  courage  and  lively  audacity,  for  I  had 
rather  receive  wounds  upon  my  body  than  money 
or  gold  in  my  hands ;  and  as  for  death  (which  other 
men  do  fear)  I  care  nothing  at  all  for  it.  Yet  think 
you  not  that  I  am  an  abject  or  a  beggar,  neither 
judge  you  my  virtue  and  prowess  by  my  ragged 
clothes,  for  I  have  been  a  captain  of  a  great  company, 
and  wasted  all  the  country  of  Macedonia  ;  I  am  the 
renowned  thief  Haemus  the  Thracian,  whose  name 
whole  countries  and  nations  do  greatly  fear :  I  am 
the  son  of  Theron  the  notable  thief,  nourished  with 
human  blood,  brought  up  amongst  the  stoutest  of 
such  a  band,  and  finally  I  am  inheritor  and  follower 
of  my  father's  virtues.  Yet  I  lost  in  a  short  time 
all  my  ancient  company  and  all  my  riches  by  one 
assault  which  I  made,  to  my  hurt,  upon  a  factor  of 
the  Prince,  which  sometime  had  received  a  wage  of 
two  hundred  pounds,  but  then  had  been  cast  down 
from  his  rank  by  fortune.  Hearken,  and  I  will  tell 
you  the  whole  matter  in  order. 

"  There  was  a  certain  man  in  the  Court  of  the 
Emperor  which  had  many  offices  and  high  renown, 
and  in  great  favour  with  the  Prince  himself,  who  at 
last  by  the  envy  and  cunning  of  divers  persons  was 
banished  away  and  compelled  to  forsake  the  Court : 
but  his  wife  Plotina,  a  woman  of  rare  faith  and 
singular  shamefastness,  having  borne  ten  children 
to  her  husband  to  be  the  foundation  of  his  house, 
despised  all  worldly  pomp  and  delicacy  of  living  in 



comes  et  infortunii  socia,  tonso  capillo  in  mascii- 
linam  faciem  reformato  habitu,  pretiosissimis  moni- 
lium  et  auro  monetali  zonis  refertis  incincta,  inter 
ipsas  custodientium  militum  manus  et  gladios  nudos 
intrepida,  cunctorum  periculorum  particeps  et  pro 
mariti  salute  pervigilem  curam  suscipiens,  aerum- 
nas  assiduas  ingenio  masculo  sustinebat.  lamque 
plurimis  itineris  difficultatibus  marisque  terroribus 
exanclatis  Zacynthum  petebat,  quam  sors  ei  fatalis 
7  decreverat  temporariam  sedem.  Sed  cum  primum 
litus  Actiacum,  quo  tune  Macedonia  delapsi  gras- 
sabamur,  appulisset,  nocte  promota  tabernulam  quan- 
dam  litori  navique  proximam,  quam  l  vitatis  maris 
fluctibus  incubabant,  invadimus  et  diripimus  omnia, 
nee  tamen  periculo  levi  temptatidiscessimus.  Simul 
namque  primum  sonum  ianuae  matrona  percepit,  pro- 
currens  in  cubiculum  clamoribus  inquietis  cuncta 
miscuit,  milites  suosque  famulos  nominatim,  sed  et 
omnem  viciniam  suppetiatum  convocans,  nisi  quod 
pavore  cunctorum,  qui  sibi  quisque  metuentes  deli- 
tescebant,  effectum  est,  ut  impune  discederemus. 
Sed  protinus  sanctissima — vera  enim  dicenda  sunt — 
et  unicae  fidei  femina,  bonis  artibus  gratiosa,  preci- 
bus  ad  Caesaris  numen  porrectis,  et  marito  reditum 
celerem  et  aggressurae  plenam  vindictam  impetravit : 
denique  noluit  esse  Caesar  Haemi  latronis  collegium, 
et  confestim  interivit ;  tantum  potest  nutus  etiam 

i  The  insertion  of  quam   seems   to  be   necessary  here,  as 
suggested  by  Luetjohann. 



cities,  and  determined  to  follow  her  husband,  anu  10 
be  a  partaker  of  all  his  perils  and  dangers :  where- 
fore she  cut  off  her  hair,  disguised  herself  like  a  man, 
and  sewed  into  her  girdle  much  jewellery  and 
treasure,  passing  through  the  bands  of  the  soldiers 
that  guarded  him  and  the  naked  swords  without  any 
fear;  whereby  she  shared  all  his  dangers  and  en- 
dured many  miseries  with  the  spirit  of  a  man,  not  of 
a  woman,  and  was  partaker  of  much  affliction  to  save 
the  life  of  her  husband.  And  when  they  had  escaped 
many  perilous  dangers  as  well  by  land  as  by  sea,  they 
went  towards  Zacynthus  to  continue  there  for  a  tune 
according  as  fortune  had  appointed.  But  when  they 
arrived  on  the  sea-coast  of  Actium  (where  we  in  our 
return  from  Macedonia  were  roving  about)  when 
deep  night  was  come  they  turned  into  a  house,  not 
far  distant  from  the  shore  and  their  ship,  where  they 
lay  all  night  to  escape  the  tossing  of  the  waves. 
Then  we  entered  in  and  took  away  all  their  sub- 
stance, but  verily  we  were  in  great  danger,  for  the 
good  matron,  perceiving  us  incontinently  by  the  noise 
of  the  gate,  went  into  the  chamber,  and  aroused  all 
by  her  cries,  calling  up  soldiers  and  servants,  every 
man  by  his  name,  and  likewise  the  neighbours  that 
dwelt  round  about ;  and  it  was  but  by  reason  of  the 
fear  that  every  one  was  in,eachone  hidinghimself,that 
we  hardly  escaped  away.  But  this  most  holy  woman, 
faithful  and  true  to  her  husband  (as  the  truth  must 
be  declared)  and  a  favourite  of  all  for  her  great  worth, 
returned  to  Caesar  desiring  his  aid  and  puissance, 
and  obtained  for  her  husband  his  soon  return  and 
vengeance  for  the  injury  done  to  him.  Then  willed 
Caesar  that  the  company  of  Haemus  should  not  any 
longer  be,  and  straightway  it  went  to  wrack :  so 
great  was  the  authority  and  word  of  the  Prince. 



magni  principis.  Tota  denique  factione  militarium 
vexillationum  indagatu  confecta  atque  concisa,  ipse 
me  furatus  aegre  solus  mediis  Orci  faucibus  ad  hunc 

8  evasi    modum  :    sumpta    veste    muliebri    florida   in 
sinus  flaccidos  abundante,  mitellaque  textili  contecto 
cap'ite,  calceis  femininis  albis  illis  et  tenuibus  indutus 
et  in  sequiorem  sexum  incertus  atque  absconditus, 
asello  spicas  hordeacias  gerenti  residens  per  medias 
acies  -  infesti    militis    transabivi  ;      nam    rnulierena 
putantes  asinariam  concedebant  liberos  abitus,  quippe 
cum    mihi    etiam    tune   depiles   genae  levi  pueritia 
splendicarent.     Nee  ab  ilia  tamen  paterna  gloria  vel 
mea  virtute  descivi,  quamquam  semitrepidus  iuxta 
mucrones    Martios    constitutus,    sed    habitus    alieni 
fallacia  tectus,  villas  seu  castella   solus  aggrediens-, 
viaticulum    mihi  corrasi,"  et  diloricatis  statim  pan- 
nulis  in  medium  duo  milia    profudit    aureorum,   et 
"  En  "  inquit  "  Istam   sportulam,  immo  vero  dotem 
collegio  vestro  libens  rneque  vobis  ducem  fidissimum, 
si  tamen  non  recusatis,  offero,  brevi  temporis  spatio 
lapideam  istam  domum  vestram  facturus  auream." 

9  Nee   mora   nee   cunctatio,   sed    calculis    omnibus 
ducatum  latrones  unanimes  ei  deferunt,  vestemque 
lautiusculam  proferunt  sumeret  abiecto    centunculo 
divite :    sic   reformatus    singulos    exosculatus    et   in 
summo   pulvinari   locatus    cena    poculisque    magnis 
inauguratur.      Tune    sermonibus  mutuis -de  virginis 


Howbeit  when  all  my  band  was  lost  and  cut  up  by 
search  of  the  Emperor's  army,  I  only  stole  away  and 
hardly  delivered  myself  from  the  very  jaws  of  death, 
in  this  manner  :  I  clothed  myself  in  a  woman's  gaudy 
attire,  that  flowed  into  loose  and  free  folds,  covering 
my  head  with  a  woven  cap,  and  placing  the  white  and 
thin  shoes  of  women  upon  my  feet :  and  thus  hidden 
and  changed  into  the  similitude  of  the  worser  sex, 
and  mounted  upon  an  ass  that  carried  barley  sheaves, 
passing  through  the  middle  of  them  all,  I  escaped 
away,  because  every  one  deemed  I  was  a  woman 
that  drove  asses,  by  reason  at  that  time  I  lacked  a 
beard  and  my  cheeks  shone  with  the  colour  and 
smoothness  of  a  boy's.  Howbeit  I  left  not  off  for  all 
this,  nor  did  degenerate  from  the  glory  of  my  father 
or  mine  own  virtue,  though  somewhat  fearful  among 
the  drawn  martial  swords,  yet  disguised  like  a  woman 
I  invaded  towns  and  castles  alone  to  get  sofne  prey." 
And  therewithal  he  pulled  out  two  thousand  crowns^ 
by  ripping  up  his  ragged  coat,  saying :  "  Hold  here 
this  gift,  or  rather  this  dowry  which  I  present  unto 
your  brotherhood ;  hold  eke  my  person,  which  you 
shall  always  find  trusty  and  faithful  if  you  shall  will- 
ingly receive  me  to  be  your  captain :  and  I  will 
ensure  you  that  in  so  doing,  within  short  space  I  will 
make  and  turn  this  stony  house  of  yours  into  gold." 
Then  by  and  by  every  one  consented  to  make  him 
their  captain,  and  so  they  gave  him  a  better  gar- 
ment to  wear  and  throw  away  his  old,  wherein  the 
gold  had  been.  When  he  had  changed  his  attire, 
he  embraced  them  one  after  another ;  then  placed 
they  him  in  the  highest  room  of  the  table,  and 
drank  unto  him  in  great  cups  in  token  of  good  luck  : 
and  then  they  began  to  talk,  and  declared  unto  him 
the  going  away  of  the  gentlewoman,  and  how  I  bare 


fuga  deque  mea  vectura  et  utrique  destinata  mon- 
struosa  morte  cognoscit,  et  ubi  locorum  esset  ilia 
percontatus  deductusque,  visa  ea,  ut  erat  vinculis 
onusta,  coiitorta  et  vituperanti  nare  discessit,  et 
"  Non  sum  quidera  tarn  brutus  vel  certe  temerarius  " 
inquit  "  Ut  scitum  vestrum  inhibearn.  sed  malae 
conscientiae  reatum  intra  me  sust;./iebo,  si  quod 
bonum  mihi  videtur  dissimulavero.  Sed  prius  fidu- 
ciam  vestri  causa  sollicito  mihi  tribuite,  cum  praeser- 
tim  vobis,  si  sententia  baec  mea  displicuerit,  liceat 
rursurn  ad  asinum  redire.  Nam  ego  arbitror  latrones, 
quique  eorum  recte  sapiunt,  nihil  anteferre  lucro 
suo  debere,  ac  ne  ipsam  quidem  saepe  et  aliis 
damnosam  ultionem.  Ergo  igitur  si  perdideritis 
in  asino  virginem,  nihil  amplius  qtiam  sine  ullo  com- 
pendio  indignationem  vestram  exercueritis.  Quin 
ego  censeo  deducendam  earn  ad  quampiam  civitatem 
ibique  venundandam.  Nee  enim  levi  pretio  distrain 
poterit  talis  aetatula :  nam  et  ipse  quosdam  lenones 
pridem  cognitos  habeo,  quorum  poterit  unus  magnis 
equidem  talentis,  ut  arbitror,  puellam  istam  prae- 
stinare,  condigne  natalibus  suis  fornicem  processuram 
nee  in  similem  fugam  discursuram ;  non  nihil  etiam 
cum  lupanari  servierit,  vindictae  vobis  depensuram. 
Hanc  ex  animo  quidem  meo  sententiam  conducibilem 
protuli,  sed  vos  vestrorum  estis  consiliorum  rerumque 

10  Sic  ille  latronum  fisci  advocatus  nostram  causam 
pertulerat,  virginis  et  asini  sospitator  egregius  ;  sed  in 


her  upon  my  back,  and  what  horrid  death  was 
ordained  for  us  two.  Then  he  asked  where  she  was, 
whereupon  being  brought  to  the  place  where  the 
gentlewoman  was  fast  bound,  whom  as  soon  as  he 
beheld,  he  turned  himself  despising  and  wringing 
his  nose  and  blamed  them,  saying  :  "  I  am  not  so 
much  a  beast  or  so  rash  a  fellow  that  I  would  drive 
you  quite  from  your  purpose;  but  my  conscience 
will  not  suffer  me  to  conceal  anything  that  toucheth 
your  profit,  since  I  am  careful  for  you ;  therefore 
give  me  your  affiance,  especially  seeing  that  if  my 
counsel  do  displease  you,  you  may  at  your  own 
liberty  proceed  again  in  your  enterprise  to  the  ass. 
For  I  doubt  not  but  all  thieves,  and  such  as  have  a 
good  judgement,  will  prefer  their  own  lucre  and  gain 
ibove  all  things  in  the  world,  and  above  their  ven- 
geance which  may  purchase  damage  both  to  them- 
selves and  to  divers  other  persons.  Therefore  if 
you  put  this  virgin  in  the  ass's  belly,  you  shall  but 
execute  your  indignation  against  her  without  all 
manner  of  profit :  but  I  would  advise  you  to  carry 
the  virgin  to  some  town  and  to  sell  her.  And  such 
a  brave  girl  as  she  is,  and  so  young,  may  be  sold  for 
a  great  quantity  of  money  :  and  I  myself  know  cer- 
tain bawd  merchants,  amongst  whom  peradventure 
some  one  will  give  us  great  sums  of  gold  for  her, 
and  will  lay  her  in  a  brothel  equal  to  her  good  birth, 
when  she  shall  not  again  run  away :  and  so,  as 
bound  in  slavery  to  a  bawdy-house,  you  shall  have 
vengeance  enough  of  her.  This  is  my  true  opinion 
touching  this  affair ;  but  advise  you  what  you  intend 
to  do,  for  you  may  rule  me  in  this  case." 

In  this  manner  the  good  thief  pleaded  for  the 
thieves'  treasury  and  defended  our  cause,  being  a 
good  patron  to  the  hapless  virgin  and  to  me  poor 



diutina  deliberatione  ceteri  cruciantes  mora  consilii 
mea  praecordia,  immo  miserum  spiritum,  libentes 
tandem  novicii  latronis  accedunt  sententiae  et  pro- 
tinus  vinculis  exsolvunt  virginem.  Quae  quidem 
simul  viderat  ilium  iuvenem,  fornicisque  et  lenonis 
audierat  mentionem,  coepit  risu  laetissimo  gestire, 
ut  mihi  merito  subiret  vituperatio  totius  sexus,  cum 
viderem  puellam,  proci  iuvenis  amore  nuptiarumque 
castarum  desiderio  simulate,  lupanaris  spurci  sordidi- 
que  subito  delectari  nomine  ;  et  tune  quidem  totarum 
mulierum  secta  moresque  de  asini  pendebant  iudicio. 
Sed  ille  iuvenis  sermone  repetito  "  Quin  igitur/' 
inquit  "  Supplicatum  Marti  comiti  pergimus  et 
puellam  simul  vendituri  et  socios  indagaturi  ?  Sed, 
ut  video,  nullum  uspiam  pecus  sacrificatui  ae  ne 
vinum  quidem  potatui  affatim  vel  sufficiens  habemus. 
Decem  mihi  itaque  legate  comites,  quis  contentus 
proximum  castellum  petam,  inde  vobis  epulas  saliares 
comparaturus."  Sic  eo  profecto  ceteri  copiosum 
instruunt  ignem  aramque  caespite  virenti  Marti  deo 

11  Nee  multo  post  adveniunt  illi  vinarios  litres 
ferentes  et  gregatim  pecua  comminantes  :  unde  prae- 
lectum  grandem  hircum,  annosum  et  horricomem, 
Marti  secutori  comitique  victimant,  et  illico  pran- 
dium  fabricatur  opipare.  Tune  hospes  ille  "  Non 
modo  "  inquit  "  Expeditionum  praedarumque,  verum 
etiam  voluptatum  vestrarum  ducem  me  strenuum 


ass.  But  they  stayed  hereupon  a  good  space  with 
long  deliberation,  which  made  my  heart  (God  wot) 
and  spirit  greatly  to  quail.  Howbeit  in  the  end  they 
consented  freely  to  his  opinion,  and  by  and  by  the 
maiden  was  unloosed  of  her  bonds  ;  who,  seeing  the 
young  man,  and  hearing  the  name  of  brothels  and 
bawd  merchants,  began  to  wax  joyful,  and  smiled 
with  herself.  Then  began  I  to  deem  evil  of  the 
generation  of  women,  when  I  saw  that  the  maiden 
(who  had  pretended  that  she  had  loved  a  young 
gentleman,  and  that  she  so  greatly  desired  her  chaste 
marriage  with  the  same)  was  now  delighted  with 
the  talk  of  a  wicked  and  filthy  brothel-house  and 
other  things  dishonest.  In  this  sort  the  consent 
and  manners  of  all  the  race  of  women  depended  in 
the  judgement  of  an  ass.  But  then  the  young  man 
spoke  again,  saying  :  "  Masters,  why  go  we  not  about 
to  make  our  prayers  to  Mars  touching  this  selling 
of  the  maiden,  and  seeking  for  other  companions  ? 
But  as  far  as  I  see,  here  is  no  manner  of  beast  to 
make  sacrifice  withal  nor  wine  sufficient  for  us  to 
drink.  Let  me  have  ten  more  with  me,  and  we  will 
go  to  the  next  town,  whence  I  will  bring  you  back 
a  supper  fit  for  a  priest."  So  he  and  ten  more  with 
him  went  their  way,  and  in  the  mean  season  the 
residue  made  a  great  fire  and  an  altar  with  green 
turfs  in  the  honour  of  Mars. 

By  and  by  they  came  again,  bringing  with  them 
bottles  of  wine  and  a  great  number  of  beasts,  amongst 
which  there  was  a  big  ram  goat,  fat,  old,  and  hairy, 
which  they  killed  and  offered  unto  Mars,  to  help  and 
be  with  them.  Then  supper  was  prepared  sump- 
tuously; and  the  new  companion  said  unto  the  others  : 
"  You  ought  to  account  me  not  only  your  captain  in 
robbery  and  fight,  but  also  in  your  pleasures  and 



sentire  debetis,"  et  aggressus  insigni  facilitate 
naviter  cuncta  praeministrat.  Verrit,  sternit,  coquit, 
tucceta  concinnat,  apponit  scitule,  sed  praecipue 
poculis  crebris  grandibusque  singulos  ingurgitat. 
Interdum  tamen  insimulatione  promendi  quae  posce- 
bat  usus,  ad  puellam  commeabat  assidue,  partesque 
surreptas  clanculo  et  praegustatas  a  se  potiones 
offerebat  hilaris  :  at  ilia  sumebat  appetenter,  et  non- 
nunquara  basiare  volenti  promptis  saviolis  allu- 
bescebat.  Quae  res  oppido  mihi  displicebat :  "  Hem 
oblita  es  nuptiarum  tuique  mutui  cupitoris,  puelJa 
virgo  ?  Et  illi  nesciocui  recenti  marito,  quern  tibi 
parentes  iunxerunt,  hunc  advenam  cruentumque 
percussorem  praeponis  ?  Nee  te  conscientia  stiraulat, 
sed  affectione  calcata  inter  lanceas  et  gladios  istos 
scortari  tibi  libet  ?  Quid,  si  quo  raodo  latrones 
ceteri  persenserint  ?  Non  rursum  recurres  ad  asinum 
et  rursum  exitium  mihi  parabis  ?  Re  vera  ludis  de 
alieno  corio." 

12  Dum  ista  sycophauta  ego  mecum  maxima  cum 
indignatione  dispute,  de  verbis  eorum  quibusdam 
dubiis,  sed  non  obscuris  prudenti  asino,  cognosce 
non  Haemum  ilium  praedonem  famosum  sed  Tlepo- 
lemum  sponsum  puellae  ipsius.  Nam  procedente  ser- 
mone  paulo  iam  clarius,  contempta  mea  praesentia 
quasi  vere  mortui,  "Bono  animo  es"  inquit  "Charite 



jollity."  Whereupon  by  and  by  with  pleasant  cheer 
he  prepared  all  things  very  cleverly ;  and  trimming 
up  the  house  he  set  the  table  in  order  and  cooked 
the  meal,  and  brought  the  pottage  and  dainty  dishes 
to  the  table ;  but  above  all,  he  plied  them  well  with 
great  pots  and  jugs  of  wine.  Sometimes  (feigning 
to  fetch  somewhat  they  required)  he  would  go  to 
the  maiden  and  give  her  pieces  of  meat  which  he  had 
privily  taken  away,  and  would  give  her  cups  of  wine 
whence  he  had  already  drunken,  which  she  willingly 
took  in  good  part.  Moreover,  he  kissed  her  twice  or 
thrice,  whereof  she  was  well  pleased,  and  would 
gladly  kiss  him  in  return  again  ;  but  I  (not  well 
content  thereat)  thought  in  myself:  "  O  wretched 
maid,  hast  thou  forgotten  thy  marriage,  and  thy 
lover  whom  thou  didst  love,  thou  a  virgin  maid,  and 
dost  esteem  this  stranger  and  bloody  thief  above  thy 
dear  husband  which  thy  parents  ordained  for  thee  ? 
Now  perceive  I  well  thou  hast  no  remorse  of  con- 
science, but  more  delight  to  do  utterly  away  with 
thy  love  and  play  the  harlot  here  amongst  so  many 
weapons  and  swords.  What,  knowest  thou  not  how 
the  other  thieves,  if  they  knew  thy  demeanour,  would 
put  thee  back  to  the  ass's  death  as  they  had  once 
appointed,  and  so  work  my  destruction  likewise  ? 
Well  do  now  I  perceive  that  thou  dost  take  pleasure 
and  sport  at  the  risk  of  another's  hide." 

WThile  I  did  devise  with  myself  all  these  things 
with  an  orator's  indignation,  I  perceived  by  certain 
signs  and  tokens  (which  were  doubtful  but  yet  not 
ignorant  to  so  wise  an  ass)  that  he  was  not  the 
notable  thief  Haemus,  but  rather  Tlepolemus  her 
husband.  For  after  much  communication  he  began 
to  speak  more  openly,  not  fearing  any  more  my 
presence  than  if  I  were  dead,  and  said  :  "  Be  of 


dulcissima,  nam  totos  istos  hostes  tuos  statim  captives 
habebis,"  et  instantia  validipre  vinum  iam  inmixtum, 
sed  modico  tepefactum  vapore,  sauciis  illis  et  crapula 
vinolentiaque  madidis  ipse  abstemius  non  cessat  im- 
pingere.  Et  Hercule  suspicionem  mihi  fecit,  quasi 
soporiferum  quoddam  venenum  cantharis  immisceret 
illis.  Cuncti  deuique  sed  prorsus  omnes  vino  sepulti 
iacebant,  omues  pares  mortuis.  Tune  nullo  negbtio 
artissimis  vinculis  impeditis  ac  pro  arbitrio  suo 
constrictis  illis,  imposita  dorso  raeo  puella,  dirigit 
gressum  ad  suam  patriam. 

13  Quam  simul  accessimus,  tota  civitas  ad  votivurn 
conspectum  effunditur.  Procurrunt  parentes,  affines, 
clientes,  alumni,  famuli,  laeti  faciem,  gaudio  delibuti : 
pompam  cerneres  omnis  sexus  et  omnis  aetatis  no- 
vurnque  et  Hercule  memorandum  spectamen,  vir- 
ginem  asino  triumphantem.  Denique  ipse  etiam 
hilarior  pro  virili  parte  ne  praesenti  negotio  ut 
alienus  discreparem,  porrectis  auribus  proflatisque 
naribus  rudivi  fortiter,  immo  tonanti  clamore  per- 
sonui.  Et  illam  thalamo  receptam  commode  parentes 
sui  fovebant,  me  vero  cum  ingenti  iumentorum 
civiumque  multitudine  confestim  retro  Tlepolemus 
agebat  11011  invitum,  nam  et  alias  curiosus  et  tune 


good  cheer,  my  sweet  friend  Charite,  for  thou  shalt 
have  ^by  and  by  all  these  thy  enemies  captive  unto 
thee."  Then  he  filled  wine  to  the  thieves  more  and 
more,  mixed  with  no  water,  but  a  little  wanned,  and 
never  ceased  till  they  were  all  overcome  and  soaked 
with  abundance  of  drink,  whereas  he  himself  ab- 
stained and  bridled  his  own  appetite :  and  truly,  I 
did  greatly  suspect  that  he  had  mingled  in  their 
cups  some  deadly  poison,  for  incontinently  they  all 
fell  down  asleep  on  the  ground  one  after  another, 
drowned  and  overcome  by  the  wine,  and  lay  as 
though  they  had  been  dead.  Then  did  he  very 
easily  tie  them  all  in  chains  and  bind  them  as  he 
would,  and  he  took  the  maiden  and  set  her  upon 
my  back  and  went  homeward. 

Now  when  we  were  near  come  home,  all  the  people 
of  the  city  (especially  her  parents  and  kinsmen, 
friends  and  family  and  servants)  came  running  forth 
joyfully  ;  and  all  they  of  the  town  of  every  age  and 
sex  gathered  together  to  see  this  new  sight  and 
strange,  a  virgin  in  great  triumph  sitting  upon  an 
ass.1  Then  I  (not  willing  to  show  less  joy  than  the 
rest,  as  far  as  I  might  as  present  occasion  served)  set 
and  pricked  up  my  long  ears,  blew  out  my  nostrils, 
and  cried  stoutly ;  nay  rather  I  made  the  town  to 
ring  again  with  my  shrilling  sound.  When  we  were 
come  to  her  father's  house  she  was  received  into  a 
chamber  honourably,  and  her  parents  tended  her 
well ;  as  for  me,  Tlepolemus,  with  a  great  number  of 
other  citizens,  did  drive  me  back  again  with  other 
horses  to  the  cave  of  the  thieves,  and  I  was  not  very 

1  It  has  been  supposed,  perhaps  without  very  much  reason, 
that  Apuleius  intended  this  to  be  a  parody  of  our  Saviour's 
Palm  Sunday  entry  into  Jerusalem.  See  note  on  Book  IX. 
ch.  14. 



latronum  captivitatis  spectator  optabam  fieri.  Quos 
quidem  colligates  adhuc  vino  magis  quam  vinculis 
deprehendiraus :  totis  ergo  prolatis  ertitisque  rebus 
et  nobis  auro  argentoque  et  ceteris  onustis,  ipsos 
partim  constrictos,  uti  fuerant,  provolutosque  in 
proximas  rupinas  praecipites  dedere,  alios  vero  suis 
sibi  gladiis  obtruncates  reliquere. 

Tali  vindicta  laeti  et  gaudentes  civitatem  reveni- 
mus :  et  illas  quidem  divitias  publicae  custodelae 
commisere,  Tlepolemo  puellam  repetitam  lege  tradi- 
1 4  dere.  Exin  me  suum  sospitatorem  nuncupatum 
matrona  prolixe  curitabat,  ipsoque  nuptiarum  die 
praesepium  meum  hordeo  passim  repleri  iubet 
faenumque  camelo  Bactrinae  sufficiens  apponi.  Sed 
rjuas  ego  condignas  Fotidi  diras  devotiones  imprecer, 
quae  me  formavit  non  canem  sed  asinum,  quippe 
cum  viderem  largissimae  cenae  reliquiis  rapinisque 
canes  omnes  inescatos  atque  distentos  !  Post  noctem 
unicam  et  rudimenta  Veneris  recens  nupta  gratias 
summas  apud  suos  parentes  acmaritummihi  meminisse 
non  destitit,  quoad  summos  illi  promitterent  honores 
habituri  mihi.  Convocatis  denique  gravioribus  amicis 
consilium  datur,  quo  potissimum  pacto  digne  remu- 
nerarer.  Placuerat  uni  domi  me  couclusum  et  otiosum 


unwilling,  for  I  much  desired  to  be  present  to  see 
the  taking  of  them.  There  we  found  them  all  asleep, 
lying  on  the  ground  as  we  left  them,  overcome 
rather  by  wine  than  by  bonds  :  and  then  they  first 
brought  out  all  the  gold  and  silver  and  other  trea- 
sures of  the  house  and  laded  us  withal :  which  when 
they  had  done,  they  threw  many  of  the  thieves  down 
into  the  bottom  of  deep  cliffs  hard  by,  and  the 
residue  they  slew  with  their  own  swords. 

After  this  we  returned  home  glad  and  merry  of  so 
great  vengeance  upon  them,  and  the  riches  which  we 
carried  was  committed  to  the  public  treasury,  and 
this  done  the  maid  was  married  to  Tlepolemus, 
according  to  the  law,  whom  by  so  much  travail  he 
had  valiantly  recovered.  Then  my  good  mistress 
looked  about  for  me,  calling  me  her  saviour  and 
deliverer,  and  asking  for  me,  commanded,  the  very 
same  day  as  her  marriage,  that  my  manger  should 
be  filled  with  barley,  and  that  I  should  have  hay  and 
oats  abundantly,  as  much  as  would  be  enough  for  a 
camel  of  Bactria.  But  how  greatly  and  worthily  did 
I  curse  Fotis  in  that  she  had  transformed  me  into  an 
ass,  and  not  into  a  dog,  because  I  saw  the  dogs  had 
filled  their  paunches  to  bursting  with  the  relics  and 
bones  of  so  worthy  a  supper  as  they  had.  The  next 
day,  after  that  best  of  nights  and  her  learning  of 
the  secrets  of  Venus,  this  new  wedded  woman  (my 
mistress)  did  not  forget  to  commend  me  before  her 
parents  and  husband  for  the  kindness  I  had  shewed 
unto  her,  and  never  left  off  until  such  time  as  they 
promised  to  reward  me  with  great  honours.  Then 
they  called  together  all  their  friends  of  more  dignity, 
to  resolve  in  what  manner  it  were  most  worthy  to 
reward  me  ;  and  thus  it  was  concluded  :  one  said 
that  I  should  be  closed  in  a  stable  and  never  work, 


hordeo  lecto  fabaque  et  vicia  saginari :  sed  obtinuit 
alius  qui  meae  libertati  prospexerat,  suadens  ut  rure- 
stribus  potius  campis  in  greges  equinos  lasciviens 
discurrerem,  daturus  dominis  equarum  inscensu 
15  generoso  multas  mulas  alumnas.  Ergo  igitur  evocato 
statim  armentario  equisone  magna  cum  praefatione 
deducendus  assignor  :  pt  sane  gaudens  laetusque  prae- 
currebam,  sarcinis  et  ceteris  oneribus  iam  nunc  re- 
nuntiaturus,  nanctaque  libertate  veris  initio  pratis 
herbantibus  rosas  utique  reperturus  aliquas.  Subibat 
me  tamen  ilia  etiam  seqtiens  cogitatio,  quod  tantis 
actis  gratiis  honoribusque  plurimis  asino  meo  tributis. 
humana  facie  recepta,  multo  tanto  pluribus  beneficiis 
honestarer.  Sed  ubi  me  procul  a  civitate  gregarius 
ille  perduxerat,  nullae  deliciae  ac  ne  ulla  quidem 
libertas  excipit.  Nam  protinus  uxor  eius  avara 
equidem  nequissimaque  ilia  mulier  molae  machinariae 
subiugum  me  dedit,  frondosoque  baculo  subinde 
castigans,  panem  sibi  suisque  de  meo  parabat 
oorio.  Nee  tantum  sui  cibi  gratia  me  fatigare  con- 
tenta,  vicinorum  etiam  frumenta  mercenariis  discur- 
sibus  meis  conterebat.  Nee  mihi  misero  statuta  saltern 
cibaria  pro  tantis  praestabantur  laboribus  :  namque 
hordeum  meum  frictum  et  sub  eadem  mola  meis  quas- 
satum  ambagrbus  colonis  proximis  venditabat,  mihi 
vero  per  diem  laboriosae  machinae  attento  sub  ipsa 



but  continually  be  fed  and  fatted  with  fine  and 
chosen  barley  and  beans  and  vetch ;  howbeit 
another  prevailed,  who  wished  my  liberty,  for  me 
to  run  lasciviously  in  the  fields  amongst  the  horses, 
whereby  I  might  engender  upon  the  mares  some  stout 
mules  for  my  mistress.  Therefore  the  groom  that 
kept  the  horses  was  called  for,  and  I  was  delivered 
unto  him  with  great  care,  in  so  much  that  I  ran 
before  him  right  pleasant  and  joyous,  because  1 
hoped  that  I  should  cany  no  more  fardels  01 
burdens  :  moreover  I  thought  that  when  I  should 
thus  be  at  liberty,  in  the  springtime  of  the  year, 
when  the  meadows  and  fields  were  green,  I  should 
find  some  roses  in  some  place ;  after  which  it  came 
into  my  mind  that  if  my  master  and  mistress  did 
render  to  me  so  many  thanks  and  honours  being 
an  ass,  they  would  much  more  reward  me  being 
turned  into  a  man.  But  when  he  (to  whom  the 
charge  of  me  was  so  straitly  committed)  had  brought 
me  a  good  way  distant  from  the  city  I  perceived  no 
delicate  meats  nor  any  liberty  which  I  should 
have,  but  by  and  by  his  covetous  wife  and  most 
cursed  quean  made  me  a  mill  ass,  and  (beating 
me  with  a  cudgel  with  many  twigs)  would  wring 
bread  for  herself  and  her  household  out  of  my  skin. 
Yet  was  she  not  contented  to  weary  me  and  make 
me  a  drudge  with  carriage  and  grinding  of  her  own 
corn,  but  she  made  me  to  grind  for  her  neighbours 
and  so  earned  more  gain  by  my  toil :  nor  would  she 
give  me  such  meat  as  it  was  ordained  that  I  should 
have,  for  all  my  miserable  labours,  for  my  own 
barley  which  I  ground  in  that  same  mill  by  my 
own  goings  about  she  would  sell  to  the  inhabi- 
tants by,  and  after  that  I  had  laboured  all  day  upon 
this  engine  of  toil,  she  would  set  before  me  at  night 



vespera  furfures  apponebat  incretos  ac  sordidos,  mul- 
toque  lapide  salebrosos. 
16  Talibus  aerumnis  edomitum  novis  Fortuna  saeva 
tradidit  cruciatibus,  scilicet  ut,  quod  aiunt,  domi 
forisque  fortibus  factis  adoriae  plenae  gloriarer. 
Equinis  armentis  namque  me  congregem  pastor 
egregius  mandati  dominici  serus  auscultator  aliquando 
permisit :  at  ego  tandem  liber  asinus,  laetus  et  tripu- 
dians  graduque  molli  gestiens  equas  opportunissimas 
iam  mihi  concubinas  futuras  deligebam.  Sed  haec 
etiam  spes  hilarior  in  capitale  processit  exitium 
mares  enim  ob  admissariam  Venerem l  pasti  satianter 
ac  diu  saginati,  terribiles  alioquin  et  utique  quovis 
asino  fortiores,  de  me  metuentes  sibi  et  adulterio 
degeneri  praecaventes,  nee  hospitalis  lovis  servato 
foedere  rivalem  summo  furentes  persequuntur  odio  : 
hie,  elatis  in  altum  vastis  pectoribus,  arduus  capite  et 
sublimis  vertice  primoribus  in  me  pugillatur  ungulis, 

ille  terga  pulposis  torulis  obesa  convertens  postremis 
velitatur  calcibus,  alius  hinnitu  maligno  comminatus, 
remulsis  auribus  dentiumque  candentium  renudatis 
asceis,  totum  me  commorsicat.  Sic  apud  historiam 
de  rege  Thracio  legeram,  qui  miseros  hospites  ferinis 
equis  suis  lacerandos  devorandosque  porrigebat :  adeo 
ille  praepotens  tyrannus  sic  parcus  hordei  fuit,  ut 
edacium  iumentorum  famem  corporum  humanorum 
largitione  sedaret. 

l  This  ia  Oudendorp's  suggestion  for  the  MSS'  admissuram 



a  little  filthy  bran,  nothing  clean  but  caked  together 
and  full  of  stones. 

Being  crushed  down  by  this  calamity,  yet  cruel 
fortune  worked  me  other  new  torments,  so  that  (as 
they  say)  I  might  verily  boast  of  a  full  reward  for  all 
my  brave  deeds  done  at  home  and  abroad  :  for  on  a 
day  I  was  let  loose  into  the  fields  to  pasture  with  the 
herds  of  horses  by  commandment  of  my  master,  who 
so  did  at  last  obey  his  lord's  bidding.  O  how  I 
leaped  for  joy,  how  I  brayed  to  see  myself  in  such 
liberty,  but  especially  since  I  beheld  so  many  mares, 
which  I  thought  should  be  my  easy  wives  and  con- 
cubines !  But  this  my  joyful  hope  turned  into  utter 
destruction,  for  incontinently  all  the  stallion  horses, 
which  were  well  fed  and  made  strong  for  their  duty 
by  ease  of  pasture,  terrible  in  any  case  and  much 
more  puissant  than  a  poor  ass,  were  jealous  over 
me,  and  feared  for  the  cuckolding  of  their  race  by 
a  weakling,  and  (not  having  regard  to  the  law  and 
order  of  the  hospitable  god  Jupiter)  ran  fiercely  and 
terribly  against  me  their  rival ;  one  reared  up  his 
broad  chest  and  high  head,  and  lifted  up  his  fore 
feet  and  kicked  me  spitefully,  another  turned  to 
me  his  strong  and  brawny  back,  and  with  his  hinder 
heels  spurned  me  cruelly,  the  third  threatening 
with  a  malicious  neighing  dressed  his  ears,  and 
shewing  his  sharp  and  white  teeth  bit  me  on  every 
side.  In  like  sort  have  I  read  in  histories  how  before 
the  king  of  Thrace l  would  throw  his  miserable 
guests  to  be  torn  in  pieces  and  devoured  of  his  wild 
horses ;  so  niggish  was  that  tyrant  of  his  provender 
that  he  nourished  his  hungry  and  starveling  beasts 
with  the  bodies  of  men. 

1  Diomede,  king  of  the  Bistones  in  Thrace.  His  final 
destruction  was  one  of  the  twel?«  labours  of  Hercules. 



Ad  eundem  rnodum  distractus  et  ipse  variis  eqiio- 
vum  incursibus,  rursus  molares  illos  circuitus  require- 
jam.  Verum  Fortuna  meis  cruciatibus  insatiabilis 
al;am  mihi  denuo  pestem  instruxit :  delegor  enim 
Kgno  monte  devehundo,  puerque  mihi  praefectus 
jmponitur,  omnibus  ille  quidem  deterrimus.  Nee  me 
mentis  excelsi  tantum  arduum  fatigabat  iuguin,  nee 
saxeas  tantum  sudes  incursando  contribam  ungulas, 
verum  fustium  quoque  crebris  ictibus  prolixe  dedola- 
bar,  ut  usque  plagarum  mihi  medullaris  insideret 
dolor  ;  coxaeque  dexterae  semper  ictus  incutiens  et 
unum  feriendo  locum  dissipato  corio  et  ulceris  latis 
sinii  facto  foramine,  immo  fovea  vel  etiam  fenestra, 
nullus  tamen  desinebat  identidem  vulnus  sanguine 
delibutum  obtundere.  Lignorum  vero  tanto  me 
premebat  pondere,  ut  fascium  molem  elephanto,  non 
asino  paratam  putares :  ille  vero  etiam  quotiens  in 
alteruin  latus  praeponderans  declinarat  sarcina,  cum 
deberet  potius  gravantis  ruinae  fustes  demere  et 
levata  paulisper  pressura  sanare  me,  vel  certe  in 
alterum  latus  translatis  peraequare,  contra,  lapidibus 
additis  insuper,  sic  iniquitati  ponderis  medebatur. 
Nee  tamen  post  tantas  meas  clades  immodico  sar- 
cinae  pondere  contentus,  cum  fluvium  transcende- 
remus,  qui  forte  praeter  viam  defluebat,  peronibus 
suis  ab  aquae  madore  consulens  ipse  quoque  insuper 
lumbos  meos  insiliens  residebat,  exiguum  scilicet  et 
jllud  tantae  molis  superpondium  :  ac  si  quo  casu  limo 
caenoso  ripae  supercilio  lubricante  oneris  impatientia 


After  the  same  manner  1  was  cruelly  handled  by 
the  horses,  so  that  I  longed  for  the  mill  again 
whereby  I  went  round  and  round  ;  but  behold 
fortune  (insatiable  of  my  torments)  had  devised  a 
new  pain  for  me.  I  was  appointed  to  bring  home 
wood  every  clay  from  a  high  hill,  and  who  should 
drive  me  thither  and  home  again  but  a  boy  that  was 
the  veriest  hangman  in  all  the  world :  he  was  not 
contented  with  the  great  travail  I  took  in  climbing 
up  the  steep  hill,  neither  that  my  hoofs  were  torn 
and  worn  away  by  sharp  flints,  but  he  beat  me 
cruelly  and  very  often  with  a  great  staff,  in  so  much 
that  the  marrow  of  my  bones  did  ache  for  woe  ;  for 
he  would  strike  me  continually  in  rny  right  hip  and 
still  in  one  place,  whereby  he  tare  my  skin  and  made 
of  my  wide  sore  a  great  hole  or  trench,  or  rather  a 
window  to  look  out  at,  and  although  it  ran  down  of 
blood,  yet  would  he  not  cease  beating  me  in  that 
place.  Moreover  he  laded  me  with  such  great 
trusses  and  burdens  of  wood  that  you  would  think 
they  had  rather  been  prepared  for  elephants  than 
for  an  ass,  and  when  he  perceived  that  my  wood 
hanged  more  of  one  side  than  another  (when  he 
should  rather  take  away  the  heavy  sides  and  so  ease 
me,  or  else  lift  them  up  a  little,  or  at  least  put  them 
over  to  make  them  equal  with  the  other)  he  laid 
great  stones  upon  the  lighter  side  to  remedy  the 
matter.  Yet  could  he  not  be  contented  with  this 
my  great  misery  and  immoderate  burdens  of  wood, 
but  when  we  came  to  any  river  by  the  way,  he,  to 
save  his  boots  from  water,  would  leap  upon  my  loins 
likewise,  which  was  no  small  load  upon  load.  And 
if  by  adventure  I  had  fallen  down  in  any  dirty  or 
miry  place  by  the  water-side,  on  the  slippery  bank, 
under  that  load  too  great  for  me  to  bear,  when  he 



prolapsus  deruissem,  cum  deberet  egregius  agaso 
manum  porrigere,  capistro  suspendere,  cauda  sub- 
levare,  certe  partem  tanti  oneris,  quoad  resurgerem 
saltern,  detrahere,  nullum  quidem  defesso  mihi  fere- 
bat  auxilium,  sed  occipiens  a  capite,  immo  vero  et 
ipsis  auribus,  totum  me  compilabat,  ceciditque  a  fusti 
grandissimo,  donee  foment!  vice  ipsae  me  plagae  sus- 
citarent.  Idem  mihi  talem  etiam  excogitavit  perni- 
ciem :  spinas  acerrumas  et  punctu  venenato  viriosas 
in  fascem  tortili  nodo  constrictas  caudae  meae  pen- 
silem  deligavit  cruciatum,  ut  incessu  meo  commotae 
incitataeque  funestis  aculeis  infeste  me  convulnera- 
19  rent.  Ego  igitur  ancipiti  malo  laborabam  :  nam  cum 
me  cursu  proripueram  fugiens  acerbissimos  incursus, 
vehementiore  nisu  spinarum  feriebar ;  si  dolori  par- 
cens  paululum  restitissem,  plagis  compellebar  ad 
cursum.  Nee  quicquam  videbatur  aliud  exCogitare 
puer  ille  nequissimus  quam  ut  me  quoquo  modo  per- 
ditum  iret,  idque  iurans  etiam  nonnunquam  commina- 
batur.  Et  plane  fuit  quod  eius  detestabilem  mali- 
tiam  ad  peiores  conatus  stimularet :  nam  quadam 
die,  nimia  eius  insolentia  expugnata  patientia  mea, 
calces  in  eum  validas  extuleram.  Denique  tale  faci- 
nus  in  me  comminiscitur :  stuppae  sarincae  me  satis 
onustum  probeque  funiculis  constrictum  producit  in 
viam  deque  proxima  villula  spirantem  carbunculum 
furatus,  oneris  in  ipso  meditullio  reponit.  lamque 
fomento  tenui  calescens  et  enutritus  ignis  surgebat 
in  flammas  et  totum  me  funestus  ardor  invaserat,  nee 

l  After  compilabat  the  MSS  have  cidit,  which  is  no  word 
and  does  not  make  sense.  Ceciditque  will  construe,  though 
the  sudden  change  from  imperfect  to  perfect  is  awkward. 



should  have  lent  a  hand  to  pull  me  out,  or  lifted 
me  out  by  the  bridle  or  by  my  tail,  or  taken  off 
some  of  my  load  so  that  I  might  be  able  to  rise, 
he  would  never  help  me,  but  laid  me  on  from 
top  to  toe,  yea,  from  my  very  ears,  with  a  mighty 
staff,  whereby  I  was  compelled  by  force  of  the 
blows,  as  by  a  medicine,  to  stand  up.  The  same 
hangman  boy  did  invent  another  torment  for  me : 
he  gathered  a  great  many  sharp  thorns,  as  sharp 
as  needles  and  of  most  poisonous  prick,  and  bound 
them  with  knots  into  a  bundle  which  he  tied 
at  my  tail  to  prick  me,  so  that  as  I  walked  they 
would  swing  against  me  and  wound  me  sorely  with 
their  accursed  spikes.  Then  was  I  afflicted  on  either 
side  ;  for  when  I  endeavoured  to  run  away  from 
his  bitter  onslaughts  the  thorns  pi'icked  me  more 
vehemently,  and  if  I  stood  still  to  rest  from  the  pain 
the  boy  beat  me  until  I  ran  again,  whereby  I  per- 
ceived that  the  hangman  did  devise  nothing  else 
save  to  kill  me  by  some  manner  of  means,  and 
even  so  he  would  often  swear  and  threaten  to  do. 
And  in  truth  there  was  some  occasion  to  stir  his 
malicious  mind  into  worse  attempts  ;  for  upon  a  day 
(after  my  patience  had  been  altogether  overcome  by 
his  wickedness)  I  lifted  up  my  heels  and  spurned 
him  well-favouredly.  Then  he  invented  this  ven- 
geance against  me  :  after  he  had  well  laded  me  with 
tow  and  flax,  and  had  trussed  it  round  safely  with 
ropes  upon  my  back,  he  brought  me  out  into  the 
way :  then  he  stole  a  burning  coal  out  of  a  man  s 
house  of  the  next  village  and  put  it  into  the  middle 
of  the  load,  and  soon  the  fire  caught  and  increased 
in  the  dry  and  light  matter  and  burst  into  flames, 
and  the  fierce  heat  thereof  did  burn  me  on  every 
side ;  and  I  could  see  no  remedy  for  my  utter 


ullum  pestis  extremae  suffugium  nee  salutis  aliquod 
apparet   solacium,  et    ustrina   tales  moras  non   sus- 

20  tinens  et  meliora  consilia  praevertitur      Sed  in  rebus 
scaevis   afFulsit    Fortunae   nutus   hilarior,  nescio   an 
futuris  periculis  me  reservans,  certe  praesente  statu- 
taque  morte  liberans  :  nam  forte  pluviae  pridianae 
recens   conceptaculum   aquae   lutulentae   proximum 
conspicatus,  ibi  memet  improvido  saltu  totum  abicio, 
flammaque  prorsus  extincta,  tandem  et  pondere  leva- 
tus  et  exitio  liberatus  evado.     Sed  ille  deterrimus  ac 
temerarius  ptier  hoc  quoque  suum  nequissimum  fac- 
tum  in  me  retorsit,  gregariisque  omnibus  affirmavit 
me  sponte  vicinorum  foculos  transeuntem,  titubanti 
gradu  prolapsum,  ignem  ultroneum  accersisse  mihi, 
et  arridens  addidit :    "  Quousque  ergo  frustra  pasce- 
mus  igninum  istum  ?  " 

Nee  multis  interiectis  diebus  longe  peioribus  me 
dolis  petivit.  Ligno  enim  quod  gerebam  in  proxi- 
mam  casulam  vendito  vacuum  me  ducens,  iam  se 
nequitiae  meae  proclamans  imparem  miserrimumque 
istud  magisterium  renuens,  querelas  huiusmodi  con- 

21  cinnat:  "  Videtis  istum  pigrum   tardissimumque    et 
nimis  asinum  ?    me  praeter  cetera  flagitia  nunc  nouis 
periculis  etiam  angit :  ut   quemque  enim  viatorem 
prospexerit,  sive  ilia  scitula  mulier  sen  virgo  nubilis 
seu    tener   puellus  est,   illico  disturbato  gestamine, 
nonnunquam  etiam  ipsis  stramentis  abiectis,  fur  ens 
incurrit  et  homines  amator  talis  appetit,  et  humi  pro- 
stratis  illis  inhians  illicitas  atque  incognitas  temptat 
libidines  et  ferinas  1  aversa  Venere  invitat  ad  nuptias. 
Nam  imaginem  etiam  savii  mentiendo  ore  improbo 

I  After  ferinas  the  MSS  have  voluptates.  This  will  not 
construe,  and  seems  like  a  gloss  on  libidines  or  ferinas  nuptias 
which  has  crept  into  the  text. 



destruction,  nor  how  I  might  save  myself,  and  iri 
such  a  burning  it  was  not  possible  for  me  to  stand 
still,  and  there  was  no  time  to  advise  l:ett  -r ;  but 
fortune  was  favourable  towards  me  in  my  misf  >rtune, 
perhaps  to  reserve  me  for  more  dangers  ;  at  least 
she  saved  me  from  the  present  death  thus  devised, 
for  I  espied  a  great  hole  full  of  muddy  rain-water 
that  fell  the  day  before ;  thither  I  ran  hastily  and 
plunged  myself  therein,  in  such  sort  that  I  quenched 
the  fire  and  was  delivered  both  from  my  load  and 
from  that  peril.  But  the  vile  boy  turned  even  this 
his  most  wicked  deed  upon  me,  and  declared  to  all 
the  shepherds  about  that  I  willingly  leaped  over  a 
fire  of  the  neighbours  and  tumbled  in  it  and  set 
myself  afire.  Then  he  laughed  upon  me,  saying  : 
"  How  long  shall  we  keep  this  fiery  ass  in  vain  ?  " 

A  few  days  after,  this  boy  invented  another  mis- 
chief much  worse  than  the  former :  for  when  he  had 
sold  all  the  wood  which  I  bare  to  certain  men  dwell- 
ing in  a  village  by,  he  led  me  homeward  unladm. 
And  then  he  cried  that  he  was  not  able  to  rule  me, 
for  that  he  was  unequal  to  my  naughtiness,  and  that 
he  would  not  drive  me  to  the  hill  any  longer  for 
wood,  saying:  "Do  you  see  this  slow  and  dull  beast, 
too  much  an  ass?  Now,  besides  all  the  mischiefs 
that  he  hath  wrought  already,  he  inventeth  daily 
more  and  more.  For  when  he  espieth  any  passing 
by  the  way,  whether  it  be  a  fair  woman  or  a  maid 
ready  for  marriage,  or  a  young  boy,  he  will  throw  his 
burden  from  his  back,  yea,  and  often  break  his  very 
girths,  and  runneth  fiercely  upon  them.  And  after 
that  he  hath  thrown  them  down,  he  will  stride  over 
them  to  take  his  beastly  pleasure  upon  them.  More- 
over, he  will  feign  as  though  he  would  kiss  them  with 
his  great  and  wicked  mouth,  but  he  will  bite  their 



compulsat  ac  morsicat.  Quae  res  nobis  non  medio- 
cres  lites  atque  iurgia,  immo  forsitan  et  crimina 
pariet.  Nunc  etiam  visa  quadam  honesta  iuvene, 
ligno  quod  devehebat  abiecto  dispersoque,  in  earn 
furiosos  direxit  impetus,  et  festivus  hie  amasio  humo 
sordida  prostratam  mulierem  ibidem  incoram  omnium 
gestiebat  inscendere.  Quod  nisi  ploratu  questuque 
femineo  conclamatum  viatorum  praesidium  accurris- 
set  ac  de  mediis  ungulis  ipsius  esset  erepta  libera- 
taque,  misera  ilia  compavita  atque  dirupta  ipsa 
quidem  cruciabilem  cladem  sustinuisset,  nobis  vero 
poenale  reliquisset  exitium." 

22  Talibus  mendaciis  admiscendo  sermones  alios,  qui 
meum  verecundum  silentium  vehementius  premerent, 
anirnos  pastorum  in  meam  perniciem  atrociter  susci- 
tavit.    Denique  unus  ex  illis  :  "  Quin  igitur  publicum 
istum  maritum/'  inquit  "  Immo  communem  omnium 
adulterum  illis  suis  monstruosis  nuptiis  condignam 
victimamus  hostiam  ?  "  et  "Heus  tu,  puer,"  ait  "  Ob- 
truncato  protinus  eo  intestina  quidem  canibus  nostris 
iacta,  ceteram  vero  carnem  omnem  operariorum  cenae 
reserva.    Nam  corium  affirmatum  cineris  inspersu  do- 
minis  referemus  eiusque  mortem  de  lupo  facile  men- 
tiemur."     Sublata   cunctatione   accusator   ille  meus 
noxius,  ipse  etiam   pastoralis   exsecutor   sententiae, 
laetus  et  meis  insultans  malis  calcisque  illius  admoni- 
tus,  quam  inefficacem  fuisse  mehercules  doleo,  pro- 

23  tinus  gladium  cotis  attritu  parabat.     Sed  quidam  de 
coetu    illo    rusticorum    "  Nef'as "  ait  "  Tarn   bellum 
asinum  sic  enecare  et  propter  luxuriem  lasciviamque, 
amatoria  protinus  J  opera,  servitioque  tarn  necessario 
carere,  cum  alioquin  exsectis  genitalibus  possit  neque 

1  There  is  a  gap  in  the  best  MS  between  amatoria  and  opera, 
into  which  a  later  hand  has  written  criminatus.  Protinus, 
suggested  both  by  Leo  and  Plasberg,  makes  good  seuse. 



faces  cruelly,  which  thing  may  work  us  great  dis- 
pleasure, or  rather  be  imputed  unto  us  as  a  crime ; 
and  even  now,  when  he  espied  an  honest  maiden 
passing  by  the  highway,  he  by  and  by  threw  down  his 
wood  in  a  heap  and  ran  after  her;  and  when  this 
jolly  lover  had  thrown  her  upon  the  ground,  he  would 
have  ravished  her  before  the  face  of  all  the  world, 
had  it  not  been  that  by  reason  of  her  crying  out  with 
shrieks  and  loud  lamentations,  she  was  succoured  of 
those  that  passed  by,  and  pulled  from  his  heels  and 
so  delivered.  And  if  it  had  so  come  to  pass  that  this 
fearful  maiden  had  been  slain  by  him  by  a  painful 
death,  what  danger  had  we  not  been  in  ?  " 

By  these  and  like  lies,  he  provoked  the  shepherds 
earnestly  to  my  destruction,  which  grieved  me  (God 
wot)  full  sore  that  I  could  say  nothing  to  defend  my 
chastity.  Then  one  of  the  shepherds  said  :  "  Why 
do  we  not  make  sacrifice  of  this  common  adulterous 
ass  as  his  horrid  doings  deserve  ?  My  son,"  quoth 
ne,  "  Let  us  kill  him  and  throw  his  guts  to  the  dogs, 
and  reserve  his  flesh  for  the  labourers'  supper.  Then 
let  us  cast  dust  upon  his  skin,  and  carry  it  home  to 
our  master,  and  easily  feign  that  the  wolves  have 
devoured  him."  The  boy  that  was  my  evil  accuser 
made  no  delay,  but  prepared  himself  to  execute  the 
sentence  of  the  shepherd,  rejoicing  at  my  present 
danger,  and  thinking  upon  the  kick  which  I  gave 
him ;  but  oh  how  greatly  did  I  then  repent  that  the 
stripe  of  my  heel  had  not  killed  him  !  Then  he  drew 
out  his  sword,  and  made  it  sharp  upon  a  whetstone  to 
slay  me,  but  another  of  the  shepherds  began  to  say : 
"  Verily  it  is  a  great  offence  to  kill  so  fair  an  ass,  and 
so  (by  accusation  of  luxury  and  lascivious  wantonness) 
to  lack  so  necessary  his  labour  and  service,  where 
otherwise  if  you  would  cut  off  his  stones,  he  might 



in  Venereni  ullo  modo  surgere  vosque  omni  metu 
periculi  liberate,  insuper  etiam  longe  crassior  atque 
corpulentior  effici.  Multos  ego  scio  iion  modo  asinos 
inertes,  verurn  etiam  ferocissimos  equos,  nivnio  libi- 
dinis  laborantes  atque  ob  id  truces  vesanosque,  ad- 
hibita  tali  detestatione  mansuetos  ac  mansues  exinde 
factos,  et  oneri  ferundo  non  inhabiles  et  cetero  minis- 
terio  patientes.  Denique,  nisi  vobis  suadeo  nolentibus, 
possum  spatio  modico  interiecto,  quo  mercatum  proxi- 
mum  obire  statui,  petitis  e  domo  ferramentis  huic 
curae  praeparatis,  ad  vos  actutum  redire  trucemque 
amatorem  istum  atque  insuavem  dissitis  femoribus 
emasculare  et  quovis  vervece  mitiorem  efficere." 
24  Tali  sententia  mediis  Orci  manibus  extractus,  sed 
extremae  poenae  reservatus,  maerebam  et  in  novis- 
sima  parte  corporis  totum  me  periturum  deflebam. 
Inedia  denique  continua  vel  praecipiti  ruina  memet 
ipse  quaerebam  extinguere,  moriturus  quidem  nihilo- 
minus  sed  moriturus  integer.  Dumque  in  ista  necis 
nieae  decunctor  electione,  matutino  me  rursum  puer 
ille  peremptor  meus  contra  montis  suetum  ducit 
vestigium.  lamque  me  de  cuiusdam  vastissimae 
ilicis  ramo  pendulo  destinato,  paululum  viam  super- 
gressus  ipse  securi  lignum  quod  deveheret  recidebat, 
et  ecce  de  proximo  specu  vastum  attollens  caput 
funesta  proserpit  ursa.  Quam  simul  conspexi, 
pavidus  et  repentina  facie  conterritus  totum  corporis 
pondus  in  postremos  poplites  recello,  arduaque  cer- 
vice  sublimiter  elevata,  lorum,  quo  tenebar,  rumpo, 


not  only  be  deprived  of  his  lust,  but  also  become 
gentle,  and  that  we  should  be  delivered  from  all  fear 
of  danger.  Moreover,  he  would  be  thereby  more  fat 
and  better  in  flesh.  For  I  know  myself  as  well  many 
slow  asses,  as  also  most  fierce  horses,  that  by  reason 
of  their  wantonness  have  been  most  mad  and  terrible, 
but  (when  they  were  gelded  and  cut)  they  have  be- 
come very  gentle  and  tame,  and  tractable  both  to 
bearing  burdens  and  to  all  other  use.  Wherefore  I 
would  counsel  you  to  geld  him  ;  and  if  you  consent 
thereto,  I  will  by  and  by,  when  I  have  gone  to  the 
next  market,  fetch  from  my  house  mine  irons  and 
tools  for  the  purpose  :  and  I  will  thence  immediately 
return,  and  I  assure  you  that  after  I  have  gelded  and 
cut  off  his  stones,  I  will  deliver  this  fierce  and  rude 
lover  unto  you  as  tame  as  a  lamb." 

When  I  did  perceive  that  I  was  delivered  from 
death,  but  reserved  for  the  pain  of  gelding,  I  wept 
that  with  the  hinder  part  of  my  body  I  should 
perish  altogether,  but  I  sought  about  to  kill  myself 
by  some  manner  of  means,  whether  by  fasting  con- 
tinually or  by  throwing  myself  down  some  crag  or 
precipice,  to  the  end  if  I  should  die,  I  would  die 
with  unperished  members :  and  while  I  devised  with 
myself  in  what  manner  I  might  end  my  life,  the 
rope-ripe  boy  my  destroyer  on  the  next  morrow  led 
me  to  the  hill  again,  and  tied  me  to  a  bough  of  a 
great  oak,  and  in  the  mean  season  he  took  his 
hatchet  and  went  a  little  way  up  and  cut  wood  to 
load  me  withal.  But  behold  there  crept  out  of  a 
cave  by  a  marvellous  great  bear  holding  out  his 
mighty  head;  whom  when  I  saw,  I  was  suddenly 
stricken  in  fear  with  the  sudden  sight  and  (throwing 
all  the  strength  of  my  body  into  my  hinder  heels) 
lifted  Lup  my  strained  head  and  broke  the  halter 



meque  protinus  pernici  fugae  committo,  perque 
prona,  non  tantum  pedibus  verum  etiam  toto  pro- 
iecto  corpora  propere  devolutus  immitto  me  campis 
subpatentibus,  ex1  summo  studio  fugiens  immanem 
ursam  ursaque  peiorem  ilium  puerum. 
25  Tune  quidam  viator  solitarium  vagumque  me 
respiciens  invadit  et  properiter  inscensum  baculo 
quod  gerebat  obverberans  per  obliquam  ignaramque 
me  ducebat  viam.  Nee  invitus  ego  cursui  me  com- 
modabam  relinquens  atrocissimam  virilitatis  lanienam; 
ceterum  plagis  non  magnopere  commovebar,  quippe 
consuetus  ex  forma  concidi  fustibus.  Sed  ilia  For- 
tuna  meis  casibus  pervicax  tarn  opportunum  latibulum 
misera  celeritate  praeversa  novas  instruxit  insidias  : 
pastores  enim  mei  perditam  sibi  requirentes  vacculam 
variasque  regiones  peragrantes  occurrunt  nobis 
fortuito,  statimque  me  cognitum  capistro  prehensum 
attrahere  gestiunt.  Sed  audacia  valida  resistens  ille 
fidem  hominum  deumque  testabatur :  "  Quid  me 
raptatis  ?  Violenter  quid  invaditis  ?  "  "  Ain,  te  nos 
tractamus  inciviliter,  qui  nostrum  asinum  furatus 
abducis  ?  Quin  potius  effaris  ubi  puerum  eiusdem 
agasonem,  necatum  scilicet,  occultaris  ?  "  :  et  illico 
detractus  ad  terram  pugnisque  pulsatus  et  calcibus 
contusus  infit  deierans  nullum  semet  vidisse  ductorem, 

1  One  MS  has  et  ;  another  (the  best)  a  gap  before  summo. 
Colvin's  ex  seems  satisfactory, 


wherewith  I  was  tied.  Then  there  was  no  need  to 
bid  me  run  away,  for  I  scoured  not  only  on  foot,  but 
tumbled  over  the  stones  and  rocks  with  my  body, 
till  I  came  into  the  open  fields  beneath,  to  "the  in- 
tent I  would  escape  away  from  the  terrible  bear, 
but  especially  from  the  boy  that  was  worse  than  the 

Then  a  certain  stranger  that  passed  by  the  wav 
(espying  me  alone  as  a  stray  ass)  took  me  up  quickly 
and  rode  upon  my  back,  beating  me  with  a  staff 
which  he  bare  in  his  hand  through  a  blind  and  un- 
known lane  :  whereat  I  was  little  displeased,  but 
willingly  went  forward  to  avoid  the  cruel  pain  of 
gelding  which  the  shepherds  had  ordained  for  me, 
but  as  for  the  stripes  I  was  nothing  moved,  since  I 
was  accustomed  to  be  beaten  so  every  day.  But  for- 
tune, ever  bent  on  my  ruin,  would  not  suffer  me  to 
continue  in  such  estate  long,  but  with  wondrous 
quickness  undid  my  timely  escape  and  set  a  new 
snare  for  me  :  for  the  shepherds  (looking  about  for 
a  cow  that  they  had  lost),  after  they  had  sought  in 
divers  places,  fortuned  to  come  upon  us  unawares; 
who  when  they  espied  and  knew  me,  they  would 
have  taken  me  by  the  halter,  but  he  that  rode  upon 
my  back  valiantly  resisted  them,  saying :  "  Good 
Lord,  masters,  what  intend  you  to  do  ?  Will  you  rob 
me  ?  "  Then  said  the  shepherds  :  "  What,  thinkest 
thou  that  we  handle  thee  otherwise  than  thou 
deservest,  which  art  stealing  away  our  ass?  Why 
dost  thou  not  rather  tell  us  where  thou  hast  hidden 
the  boy  that  led  him,  whom  thou  hast  doubtless 
slain  ?  "  And  therewithal  they  pulled  him  down  to 
the  ground,  beating  him  with  their  fists  and  spurning 
him  with  their  feet.  Then  he  sware  unto  them  saying 
that  he  saw  no  manner  of  boy,  but  only  found  the  ass 
Y  337 


sed  plane  continuatum  solutum  et  solitarium  ob  indi- 
civae  praemium  occupasse,  domino  tameii  suo  resti- 
tuturum.  "  Atque  utinam  ipse  asinus/'  inquit 
"  Quern  nunquam  profecto  vidissem,  vocem  quiret 
humanam  dare  meaeque  testimonium  innocentiae 
perhibere  posset ;  profecto  vos  huius  iniuriae  pi- 

Sic  asseverans  nihil  quicquam  promovebat :  nam 
collo  constrictum  reducunt  eum  pastores  molesti  con- 
tra montis  illius  silvosa  nemora,unde  lignum  puer  sole- 
26  bat  egerere  :  nee  uspiam  ruris  reperitur  ille  sed  plane 
corpus  eius  membratim  laceratum  multisque  dis- 
persum  locis  conspicitur.  Quam  rem  procul  dubio 
sentiebam  ego  illius  ursae  dentibus  esse  perfectam  et 
Hercule  dicerem  quod  sciebam,  si  loquendi  copia 
suppeditaret :  sed  quod  solum  poteram  tacitus  licet 
serae  vindictae  gratulabar.  Et  cadaver  quidem 
disiectis  partibus  tandem  totum  repertum  aegreque 
concinnatum  ibidem  terrae  dedere,  meum  vero 
Bellerophontem,  abactorem  indubitatum  cruentum- 
que  percussorem  criminantes,  ad  casas  interim  suas 
vinctum  perducunt,  quoad  renascent!  die  sequenti 
deductus  ad  magistratus,  ut  aiebant,  poenae  red- 
deretur.  Interim  dum  puerum  ilium  parentes  sui 
plangorlwus  querebantur  et  adveniens  ecce  rusticus 
nequaquam  promissum  suum  frustratus  destinatam 
sectionem  meam  flagitat,  "  Non  est "  in  his  inquit 

loose  and  straying  abroad,  which  he  took  up  to  the 
intent  he  might  have  some  reward  for  the  finding 
of  him,  and  to  restore  him  again  to  his  master.  "  And 
I  would  to  God,"  quoth  he,  "  That  this  ass  (which  I 
would  verily  I  had  never  seen)  could  speak  as  a 
man,  to  give  witness  of  my  innocence  :  then  would 
you  be  ashamed  of  the  injury  which  you  have  done 
to  me." 

Thus  reasoning  for  himself,  he  nothing  prevailed, 
for  those  angry  shepherds  tied  a  rope  about  his  neck 
and  led  him  back  again  through  the  trees  of  the  hill 
to  the  place  where  the  boy  accustomed  to  resort  for 
wood.  And  after  that  they  could  discover  him  in  no 
place,  at  length  they  found  his  body  rent  and  torn 
in  pieces,  and  his  members  dispersed  in  divers  places, 
which  I  well  knew  was  done  by  the  cruel  bear,  and 
verily  I  would  have  told  it  if  I  might  have  spoken  ; 
but  (which  I  could  only  do)  I  greatly  rejoiced  at  the 
vengeance  of  his  death,  although  it  came  too  late. 
Then  they  gathered  the  pieces  of  his  body  and 
hardly  joined  them  together  and  buried  them,  and 
straightway  they  laid  all  the  fault  to  him  that  was 
my  Bellerophon,1  charging  him  that  it  was  he  that 
took  me  up  by  the  way,  and  had  assaulted  and  slain 
the  boy,  and  (bringing  him  home  fast  bound  to  their 
houses)  purposed  on  the  next  morrow  to  accuse  him 
of  murder,  and  to  lead  him  before  the  justices  to 
have  judgement  of  death.  In  the  mean  season,  while 
the  parents  of  the  boy  did  lament  and  weep  for  the 
death  of  their  son,  the  shepherd  (according  to  his 
promise)  came  with  his  instruments  and  tools  to  geld 
me,  and  then  one  of  them  said  :  "  Tush,  our  present 

1  By  calling  his  rider  Bellerophon  (which  Adlington  merely 
translated  "my  new  master"),  the  ass  implies  that  he  was  a 
very  Pegasus. 



unus  "  Indidem  praesens  iactura  nostra,  sed  plane 
crastino  libet  non  tantum  naturam,  verum  etiam 
caput  quoque  ipsum  pessimo  isto  asino  demetere: 
nee  tibi  ministerium  deerit  istorum." 

Sic  effectum  est  ut  in  alterum  diem  clades  differ- 
retur  mea,  at  ego  gratias  agebam  bono  puero,  quod 
saltem  mortuus  unam  carnificinae  meae  dieculam 
donasset.  Nee  tamen  tantillum  saltem  gratulationi 
meae  quietive  spatium  datum  :  nam  mater  pueri 
mortem  deplorans  acerbam  filii,  fleta  et  lacrimosa 
fuscaque  veste  contecta,  ambabus  manibus  trahens 
cinerosam  canitiem,  eiulans  et  exinde  proclamans 
stabulum  irrumpit  meum,  tunsisque  ac  diverberatis 
vehementer  uberibus  incipit :  "  Et  nunc  iste  securus 
incumbens  praesepio  voracitati  suae  deservit  et 
insatiabilem  profundumque  ventrem  semper  esitaiido 
distendit,  nee  aerumnae  meae  miseretur  vel  detesta 
bilem  casum  defuncti  magistri  recordatur,  sed  scilicet 
senectam  infirmitatemque  meam  contemnit  ac  de 
spicit  et  impune  se  laturum  tantum  scelus  credit 
At  utcumque  se  praesumit  innocentem ;  est  enim 
corigruens  pessimis  conatibus  contra  noxiam  con 
scientiam  sperare  securitatem.  Nam  pro  deum 
fidem,  quadrupes  nequissrme,  licet  precariam  vocis 
usuram  sumeres,  cui  tandem  vel  ineptissimo  per- 
suadere  possis  atrocitatem  istam  culpa  carere,  cum 
propugnare  pedibus  et  arcere  morsibus  misello  puero 
potueiis  ?  An  ipsum  quidem  saepius  incursare  calci- 
bus  potuisti,  moriturum  vero  defendere  alacritate 
simili  nequisti  ?  Certe  dorso  receptum  auferres 
protinus  et  infesti  latronis  cruentis  manibus  eriperes, 


mischief  is  not  of  his  doing,  but  now  we  arc  con- 
tented that  to-morrow  not  only  this  vile  ass's  stones 
shall  be  cut  off,  but  also  his  head,  and  you  shall  not 
lack  helpers." 

So  was  it  brought  to  pass  that  my  death  was 
delayed  till  the  next  morrow  ;  but  what  thanks  did  I 
give  to  that  good  boy  who  at  least  (being  so  slain)  was 
the  cause  of  my  pardon  for  one  short  day  !  Howbeit  I 
had  no  time  then  to  rest  myself,  for  the  mother  of 
the  boy,  weeping  and  lamenting  for  his  cruel  death, 
attired  in  mourning  vesture,  tore  her  hair  and  threw 
ashes  upon  it,  and  beat  her  breast,  crying  and  howling 
very  bitterly,  and  came  presently  into  the  stable, 
saying :  "  Is  it  reason  that  this  careless  beast  should 
do  nothing  all  day  but  hold  his  head  in  the  manger, 
filling  and  boiling  his  guts  with  meat,  without  com- 
passion.of  my  great  misery  or  remembrance  of  his 
slain  master?  Surely,  contemning  my  age  and  in- 
firmity, he  thinketh  that  I  am  unable  to  revenge  his 
great  mischiefs.  Moreover  he  would  persuade  me 
that  he  were  not  culpable ;  indeed  it  agreeth  with 
the  manner  of  malefactors  to  hope  for  safety,  even 
when  as  the  conscience  doth  confess  the  offence : 
but,  O  good  Lord,  thou  cursed  beast,  if  thou  couldest 
for  the  nonce  utter  the  contents  of  thine  own  mind, 
whom  (if  he  were  the  veriest  fool  in  all  the  world) 
mightest  thou  persuade  that  this  murder  was  void  or 
without  thy  fault,  when  it  lay  in  thy  power  either 
to  keep  off'  the  thieves  from  this  poor  boy  with  thy 
heels  or  else  to  bite  and  tear  them  with  thy  teeth  ? 
Couldest  not  thou  (that  so  oft  in  his  lifetime  didst 
spurn  and  kick  him)  defend  him  now  from  his 
death  by  like  means?  Yet  at  least  thou  shouldest 
have  taken  him  upon  thy  back,  and  so  brought  him 
from  the  cruel  hands  of  thieves,  where  contrary 


postremum  deserto  deiectoque  illo  conserve  magistro 
comite  pastore  non  solus  aufugeres.  An  ignoras  eos 
etiam,  qui  morituris  auxilium  salutare  denegarint, 
quod  contra  bonos  mores  id  ipsum  fecerint,  solere 
puniri  ?  Sed  non  diutius  meis  cladibus  laetaberis, 
homicida :  senties,  efficiam,  misero  dolori  naturales 
28  vires  adesse."  Et  cum  dicto  subsertis  manibus  ex- 
solvit  suam  sibi  fasciam  pedesque  meos  singillatim 
illigans  indidem  constringit  artissime,  scilicet  ne 
quod  vindictae  meae  superesset  praesidium,  et 
pertica,  qua  stabuli  fores  offirmari  solebant,  abrepta 
non  prius  me  desiit  obtundere  quam  victis  fessisque 
viribus,  suopte  pondere  degravatus  manibus  eius 
fustis  esset  elapsus.  Tune  de  brachiorum  suorum 
cita  fatigatione  conquesta,  procurrit  ad  focum,  arden- 
temque  titionem  gerens  mediis  inguinibus  obtrudit, 
donee,  solo  quod  restabat  nisus  praesidio,  liquida 
fimo  strictim  egesta  faciem  atque  oculos  eius  con- 
foedassem.  Qua  caecitate  atque  faetore  tandem 
fugata  est  a  me  pernicies  :  ceterum  titione  delirantis 
Altheae  Meleager  asinus  interissem. 

l  Ovid,  Metamorphoses,  Vlii.  451 : 

"There  was  a  certain  firebrand  which,  when  Oeneus'  wife 

did  lie 

In  childbed  of  Meleager,  she  chanced  to  espy 
The  Destinies  putting  in  the  fire :  and,  in  the  putting  in, 
She  heard  them   speak  these  words,  as  they  his  fatal 

thread  did  spin  ; 


thou  rannest  away  alone,  having  forsaken  and  cast 
down  thy  fellow-servant,  thy  good  master,  thy  pastor 
and  conductor.  Knowest  thou  not  that  even  such  as 
deny  their  wholesome  help  and  aid  to  them  which 
are  in  danger  of  death,  are  wont  to  be  punished 
because  they  have  offended  against  good  manners 
and  the  law  natural  T  But  I  promise  thee  that  thou 
shalt  not  long  rejoice  at  my  harms,  thou  murderer ; 
I  will  ensure  thee  thou  shalt  feel  the  smart  of  my 
grief,  and  I  will  see  what  nature  can  do."  There- 
withal she  unloosed  her  apron,  and  bound  all  my  feet 
together  to  the  end  I  might  not  help  myself  in  my 
punishment :  then  she  took  a  great  bar  which  accus- 
tomed to  bar  the  stable  door,  and  never  ceased  beat- 
ing of  me  till  she  was  so  exceeding  weary  and  tired 
that  the  bar  fell  out  of  her  hands :  whereupon  she 
(complaining  of  the  soon  faintness  of  her  arms)  ran 
to  the  fire  and  brought  a  glowing  firebrand  and  thrust 
it  under  my  tail,  burning  me  continually  till  such  time 
as  (having  but  one  remedy)  I  all  bewrayed  her  face 
and  eyes  with  my  dirty  dung ;  whereby,  what  witli 
the  stink  thereof,  and  what  with  the  filthiness  that 
fell  in  her  eyes,  she  was  well  nigh  blind,  and  so  I 
enforced  the  quean  to  leave  off;  otherwise  I  had 
died  as  an  ass  as  Meleager  did  by  the  stick,  which 
his  mad  mother  Althea1  cast  into  the  fire. 

4  0  lately  born,  like  time  we  give  to  thee  and  to  this  . 
brand  *  : 

And  when  they  so  had  spoken,  they  departed  out  of  hand. 

Immediately  the  mother  caught  the  blazing  bough  aw:iy 

And  quenched  it.     This  bough  she  kept  full  charily  many 
a  day: 

And  in  the  keeping  of  the  same  she  kept  her  son  alive." 
But  when  she  heard  that  Meleager  had  killed  her  brothers  as 
the  result  of  a  quarrel   about   the  spoils  of  the  Calydonian 
boar,  she  threw  the  brand  on  the  fire,  thus  causing  his  death. 



1  NOCTIS  gallicinio  venit  quidam   iuvenis  e  proxuma 
dvitate,  ut  quidem  mihi  videbatur  unus  ex  famulis 
Charites,  puellae  illius  quae  mecum  apud  latrones 
pares  aerumnas  exanclaverat.     Is  de  eius  exitio  et 
domus  totius  infortunio  mira  ac  nefanda,ignem  propter 
assidens,  inter  conservorum  frequentiam  sic  annun- 
tiabat:    "Equisones   opilionesque,    etiam    busequae, 
fuit  Charite  nobis,  quae  misella  et  quidem  casu  gravis- 
simo,  nee  vero  incomituta  Manes  adivit.  Sed  ut  cuncta 
noritis,  referam  vobis  a  capite  quae  gesta  sunt,  quae- 
que  possent  merito  doctiores,  quibus  stilos  For  tuna 
subministrat,  in  historiae  specimen  chartis  involvere. 

"Erat  in  proxuma  civitate  iuvenis  natalibus  praeno- 
bilis,  quo  clarus  co  pecuniae  fuit  satis  locuples  sed 
Urxuriae  popinalis,  scortisque  et  diurnis  potationibus 
exercitatus,  atque  ob  id  factionibus  latronum  male 
sociatus,  necnon  etiam  manus  infectus  humanocruore, 
Thrasyllus  nomine :  idque  sic  erat  et  fama  dicebat. 

2  Hie  cum  primum  Charite  nubendo  maturuisset,  inter 
praecipuos  procos  summo  studio  petitionis  eius  munus 



ABOUT  the  cockcrow  of  night  came  a  young  man 
from  the  next  city,  which  seemed  to  be  one  of  the 
family  of  the  good  woman  Charite  which  sometime 
endured  so  much  misery  and  calamity  with  me 
amongst  the  thieves ;  who,  after  that  he  had  taken 
a  stool  and  sat  down  by  the  fireside  in  the  company 
of  the  servants,  began  to  declare  many  terrible  things 
that  had  happened  unto  Charite  and  unto  her  house, 
saying  :  "  O  ye  horsekeepers,  shepherds,  and  cow- 
herds, you  shall  understand  that  we  have  lost  our 
good  mistress  Charite  miserably  and  by  evil  adven- 
ture, but  not  alone  did  she  go  down  to  the  ghosts. 
But  to  the  end  you  may  learn  and  know  the  whole 
matter,  I  purpose  to  tell  you  the  circumstance  of 
every  point,  whereby  such  as  are  more  learned  than 
I,  to  whom  fortune  has  ministered  more  copious 
style,  may  paint  it  out  in  paper  in  form  of  an  history. 
"  There  was  a  young  gentleman  dwelling  in  the 
next  city,  born  of  good  parentage,  valiant  in  prowess, 
and  rich  in  substance,  but  very  much  given  and 
addict  to  whore-hunting  and  continual  revelling  by 
broad  day  :  whereby  he  fell  in  company  with 
thieves,  and  had  his  hand  ready  to  the  effusion  of 
human  blood  ;  and  his  name  was  Thrasyllus.  The 
matter  was  this  according  to  the  report  of  every 
man  :  when  Charite  had  come  to  an  age  ripe  for 
marriage,  he  was  among  the  chiefest  of  her  suitors 



obierat,  et  quanquam  ceteris  omnibus  id  genus  viris 
antistaret  eximiisque  muneribus  parentum  invitaret 
iudicium,  morum  tamen  improbatus  repulsae  contu- 
melia  fuerat  aspersus.  Ac  dum  herilis  puella  in  boni 
Tlepolemi  manum  venerat,  firmiter  deorsus  delapsum 
nutriens  amorem  et  denegati  thalami  permiscens  in- 
dignationem,  cruento  facinori  quaerebat  accessum. 
Nanctus  denique  praesentiae  suae  tempestillam  occa- 
sionem,  sceleri  quod  diu  cogitarat  accingitur,  ac  die, 
quo  praedonum  infestis  mucronibus  puella  fuerat  astu 
virtutibusque  sponsi  sui  liberata,  turbae  gratulantium 
exultans  insigniter  permiscuit  sese  salutique  praesenti 
ac  futurae  suboli  novorum  maritorum  gaudibundus, 
ad  honorem  splendidae  prosapiae  inter  praecipuos 
hospites  domum  nostram  receptus,  occultato  con  si  Ho 
sceleris,  amici  fidelissimi  personam  mentiebatur. 
lamque  sermonibus  assiduis  et  conversatione  f're- 
quenti,  nonnunquam  etiam  cena  poculoque  communi 
carior  cariorque  factus,  in  profundam  ruinam  cupidinis 
sese  paulatim  nescius  praecipitaverat.  Quidni,  cum 
flamma  saevi  amoris  parva  quidem  primo  vapore  de- 
lectet,  sed  fomentis  consuetudinis  exaestuans  immo- 
dicis  ardoribus  totos  amburat  homines  ? 


and  very  ardently  sought  her  hand  ;  but  although 
he  were  a  man  more  comely  than  the  residue  that 
wooed  her,  and  also  had  riches  abundantly  to 
persuade  her  parents,  yet  because  he  was  of  evil 
fame,  and  a  man  of  wicked  manners  and  conversation, 
he  had  the  repulse  and  was  put  off  by  Charite.  And 
so  our  master's  daughter  married  with  Tlepolemus  ; 
howbeit  this  young  man  secretly  cherished  his  down- 
fallen  love,  and  moved  somewhat  at  her  refusal,  he 
busily  searched  some  means  to  work  his  damnable 
intent :  and  so  (having  found  occasion  and  oppor- 
tunity to  present  himself  there)  he  girt  himself  for 
the  evil  purpose  which  he  had  long  time  concealed ; 
and  so  he  brought  it  to  pass,  that  the  same  day  that 
Charite  was  delivered  by  the  subtle  means  and  valiant 
audacity  of  her  husband  from  the  puissance  of  the 
thieves,  he  mingled  himself  amongst  the  assembly, 
feigning  with  a  notable  shew  that  he  was  glad  above 
all  others  of  the  new  marriage  and  of  the  hope  of 
future  offspring.  Hereby  (by  reason  that  he  came 
of  so  noble  parents)  he  was  received  and  entertained 
into  the  house  as  a  chief  guest,  and  falsely  coloured 
himself  to  be  one  of  their  most  principal  friends : 
and  so,  under  cloak  of  a  faithful  well-wisher,  he 
dissimuled  his  mischievous  mind  and  intent.  In 
continuance  of  time,  by  much  familiarity  and  often 
conversation  and  banqueting  together,  he  was  taken 
more  and  more  in  favour :  then  did  he  fall  little  by 
little  and  unawares  into  the  deeper  gulf  of  lust  and 
desire.  What  wonder  indeed  ?  Like  as  we  see  it 
fortuneth  to  lovers,  who  are  at  first  delighted  by  the 
flame  of  cruel  love,  when  as  it  is  small,  until  by 
continual  feeding  of  it  with  the  fuel  of  use  and 
wont,  it  gloweth  and  flameth  and  altogether  burneth 
them  up. 



3  "  Diu  denique  deliberaverat  secum  Thrasyllus,  quod 
nee   clandestinis    colloquiis   opportunum    repperiret 
locum,  et  adulterinae  Veneris  magis  magisque  prae- 
clusos  aditus  copia  custodientium  cerneret  novaeque 
atque  gliscentis  affectionis  firmissimum  vinculum  non 
posse   dissociari   perspiceret,    et   puellae,    si    vellet, 
quanquam    velle    non   posset,    furatrinae    coniugalis 
incommodaret  rudimentum  ;  et  tamen  ad  hoc  ipsum, 
quod  non  potest,  contentiosa  pernicie,  quasi  posset, 
impellitur :  quod  nunc  arduum  factu  putatur,  amore 
per  dies  roborato  facile  videtur   effectu.       Spectate 
denique  sed,  oro,  sollicitis  animis  intendite,  quorsum 
furiosae  libidinis  proruperint  impetus. 

4  "  Die    quadam     venatum    Tlepolemus    assumpto 
Thrasyllo  petebat  indagatui'us  feras,  si  quid  tamen 
in  capreis  feritatis  est;    nee  enim  Charite  maritum 
suum  quaerere  patiebatur  bestias  armatas  dente  vel 
cornu.     lamque  apud  frondosum  turaulum  ramorum- 
que  densis  tegminibus    umbrosum,  prospectu   vesti- 
gatorum  obsaeptis  capreis,  canes  venationis  indagini 
generosae,    mandato    cubili     residentes    invaderent 
bestias,  immittuntur;  statimque  sollertis  disciplinae 
memores,  partitae  totos  praecingunt  aditus  tacitaque 
prius  servata  mussitatione,  signo  sibi  repentino  red- 
dito,  latratibus   fervidis  dissonisque  miscent  omnia. 
Nee  ulla  caprea  nee  pavens  damula  nee  prae  ceteris 


"  Thrasyllus  had  long  pondered  within  himself, 
perceiving  that  it  was  a  hard  matter  to  break  his  mind 
secretly  to  Charite,  and  that  he  was  wholly  barred 
from  accomplishment  of  his  luxurious  appetite  both 
by  the  multitude  of  her  guards  and  servitors,  and 
because  the  love  of  her  and  her  husband  was  so 
strongly  linked  together  that  the  bond  between 
them  might  in  no  wise  be  dissevered  ;  and  moreover 
it  was  a  thing  impossible  to  ravish  her,  because  even 
if  she  would,  although  she  would  not,  she  knew 
nothing  of  the  arts  of  deceiving  a  spouse.  Yet  was 
he  still  provoked  forward  by  an  obstinate  madness  to 
that  very  thing  which  he  could  not,  as  though  he 
could.  At  length  the  thing  which  seemeth  so  hard 
and  difficult,  when  love  has  been  fortified  through 
time,  doth  ever  at  last  appear  easy  and  facile ;  but 
mark,  I  pray  you,  diligently,  to  what  end  the  furious 
force  of  his  inordinate  desire  came. 

"  On  a  day  Tlepolemus  went  to  the  chase  with 
Thrasyllus  to  hunt  for  wild  beasts,  but  only  for  goats 
— if  indeed  goats  be  wild  beasts — for  his  wife 
Charite  desired  him  earnestly  to  meddle  with  no 
other  beasts  which  were  of  more  fierce  and  wild 
nature,  armed  with  tusk  or  horn.  When  they  were 
come  within  the  chase  to  a  great  thicket  on  a  hill, 
fortressed  about  with  briars  and  thorns,  they  com- 
passed round  the  goats,  which  had  been  spied 
out  by  trackers ;  and  by  and  by  warning  was  given 
to  let  loose  the  dogs,  that  had  been  bred  of  a  noble 
stock,  to  rout  up  the  beasts  from  their  lairs.  They,  re- 
membering all  their  careful  teaching,  spread  out  and 
covered  every  entry;  and  first  they  did  not  give 
tongue,  but  when  on  a  sudden  the  signal  was  given 
they  rushed  in  with  such  a  cry  that  all  the  forest 
a°-ain  with  the  noise ;  but  behold  there  leaped  out 



feris  mitior  cerva,  sed  aper  immanis  atque  invisitatus 
exsurgit  toris  callosae  cutis  obesus,  pilis  inhorrentibus 
corio  squalidus,  setis  insurgentibus  spinae  hispidus, 
dentibus  attritu  sonaci  spumeus,  oculis  aspectu 
minaci  nammeus,  impetu  saevo  frementis  oris  totus 
fulmineus;  et  primum  quidem  canum  procaciores, 
quae  comminus  contulerant  vestigium,  genis  hac 
iliac  iactatis  consectas  interficit,  dein  calcata  retiola, 
5  qua  primes  impetus  reduxerat,  transabiit.  Et  nos 
quidem  cuncti  pavore  deterriti  et  alioquin  innoxiis 
venationibus  consueti,  tune  etiam  inermes  atque  im- 
muniti,  tegumentis  frondis  vel  arboribus  latenter  ab- 
scondimus ;  Thrasyllus  vero  nanctus  fraudium  oppor- 
tunum  decipulum  sic  Tlepolemum  captiose  compellat : 
'  Quid  stupore  confusi  vel  etiam  cassa  formidine 
similes  humilitati  servorum  istorum,  vel  in  modum 
pavoris  feminei  deiecti  tarn  opimam  praedam  mediis 
manibus  amittimus  ?  Quin  equos  inscendimus  ? 
Quin  ocius  indipiscimur  ?  En  cape  venabulum,  et 
ego  sumo  lanceam '  ;  nee  tantillum  morati  protinus 
insiliunt  equos  ex  summo  studio  bestiam  insequentes. 
Nee  tamen  ilia  genuini  vigoris  oblita  retorquet  im- 
petum  et  incendio  feritatis  ardescens  dente  compulso 
quern  primum  insiliat  cunctabunda  rimatur.  Sed 
prior  Tlepolemus  iaculum,  quod  gerebat,  insuper 
dorsum  bestiae  contorsit :  at  Thrasyllus  ferae  quidem 
pepercit  sed  equi,  quo  vehebatur  Tlepolemus,  pos- 
tremos  poplites  lancea  feriens  amputat.  Quadrupes 
reccidens,  qua  sanguis  effluxerat,  to  to  tergo  supinatus 


no  goat,  nor  timid  deer,  nor  hind,  most  gentle  of  all 
beasts,  but  an  horrible  and  dangerous  wild  boar,  such 
as  no  one  had  seen  before,  thick  with  muscles  and 
brawn,  with  a  filthy  and  hairy  hide,  his  bristles  rising 
along  his  pelt,  foaming  at  the  mouth,  grinding  his 
teeth,  looking  direfully  with  fiery  eyes,  and  rushing 
like  lightning  as  he  charged  with  his  furious  jaws. 
The  dogs  that  first  set  upon  him  he  tare  and  rent 
with  his  tusks,  and  rifled  them  up  and  hurled  them 
away  on  every  side,  and  then  he  ran  quite  through 
the  nets  that  had  checked  his  first  charges  and 
escaped  away.  When  we  saw  the  fury  of  this  beast, 
we  were  all  greatly  stricken  with  fear,  and  because 
we  never  accustomed  to  chase  such  dreadful  boars, 
and  further  because  we  were  unarmed  and  without 
weapons,  we  got  and  hid  ourselves  under  bushes  and 

"Then  Thrasyllus,  having  found  opportunity  to 
work  his  treason,  said  to  Tlepolemus :  '  What,  stand 
we  here  amazed  ?  Why  shew  we  ourselves  like 
these  slaves  of  ours,  or  why  leave  we  so  worthy  a 
prey  to  go  forth  from  our  very  hands,  despairing 
like  some  timid  woman?  Let  us  mount  upon  our 
horses  and  pursue  him  incontinently :  take  you  a 
hunting  javelin,  and  I  will  take  a  spear ' ;  and  by 
and  by  they  leaped  upon  their  horses  and  followed 
the  beast  earnestly.  But  he,  forgetting  not  his 
natural  strength,  returned  against  them  burning 
with  the  fire  of  his  wild  nature,  and  gnashing  his 
teeth,  pried  with  his  eyes  on  whom  he  might  first 
assail  with  his  tusks:  and  Tlepolemus  struck  the 
beast  first  on  the  back  with  his  javelin.  But  Thra- 
syllus  attacked  not  the  beast,  but  came  behind  and 
cut  the  hamstrings  of  the  hinder  legs  of  Tlepolemus1 
horse,  in  such  sort  that  he  fell  down  in  much  blood 



invitus  dominum  suum  devolvit  ad  tefram :  nee 
diu,  et  eum  furens  aper  invadit  iacentem  ac 
primo  lacinias  eius,  raox  ipsum  resurgentem  multo 
dente  laniavit.  Nee  coepti  nefarii  bonum  piguit 
amicum  vel  suae  saevitiae  litatum  saltern  tanto 
periculo  cernens  potuit  expleri,  sed  percito  atque 
plagoso,  cruda  vulnera  contegenti  suumque  auxilium 
miseriter  roganti  per  femus  dexterum  dimisit  lanceam, 
tanto  ille  quidem  fidentius  quanto  crederet  ferri 
vulnera  similia  futura  prosectu  dentium  :  necnon 
tamen  ipsam  quoque  bestiam  facili  manu  transadigit. 
6  Ad  hunc  modum  definite  iuvene  exciti  latibulo  suo 
quisque  familia  maesta  concurrimus :  at  ille  quan- 
quam  perfecto  voto,  prostrate  inimico  laetus  ageret, 
vultu  tamen  gaudium  tegit  et  frontem  asseverat  et 
dolorem  simulat,  et  cadaver,  quod  ipse  fecerat,  avide 
circumplexus,  omnia  quidem  lugentium  officia  sol- 
lerter  affinxit ;  sed  solae  lacrimae  procedere  noluerunt. 
Sic  ad  nostri  similitudinem,  qui  vere  lamentabamur, 
conformatus  manus  suae  culpam  bestiae  dabat. 

"  Necdum  satis  scelere  transacto  fama  dilabitur  et 
cursus  primos  ad  domum  Tlepolemi  detorquet  et 
aures  infelicis  nuptae  percutit.  Quae  quidem  simul 
percepit  tale  nuntium  quale  non  audiet  aliud,  amens 
et  vecordia  percita  cursuque  bacchata  furibundo  per 
plateas  populosas  et  arva  rurestria  fertur,  insana  voce 
casum  mariti  quiritans :  coirfluunt  civium  maestae 
catervae,  sequuntur  obvii  dolore  sociato,  civitas  cuncta 
vacuatur  studio  visionis.  Et  ecce  mariti  cadaver 


to  the  ground  and  threw  despite  his  will  his  master : 
then  suddenly  the  boar  came  upon  Tlepolemus,  and 
furiously  tare  and  rent  first  his  garments  and  then 
him  with  his  teeth  as  he  would  rise.  Howbeit,  his 
good  friend  Thrasyllus  did  not  repent  of  his  wicked 
deed  to  see  him  thus  wounded,  nor  was  it  enough 
for  his  cruelty  only  to  look  :  but  when  he  was  gored 
and  essayed  to  protect  his  fresh  wounds  from  the 
heavy  blows,  and  desired  his  friendly  help,  he  thrust 
Tlepolcmus  through  the  right  thigh  with  his  spear, 
the  more  boldly  because  he  thought  the  wound  of 
the  spear  would  be  taken  for  a  wound  of  the  boar's 
teeth  :  then  he  easily  killed  the  beast  likewise. 
And  when  the  young  man  was  thus  miserably  slain, 
every  one  of  us  came  out  of  our  holes,  and  went  sor- 
rowfully towards  our  slain  master.  But  although 
that  Thrasyllus  was  joyful  of  the  death  of  Tlepole- 
mus,  whom  he  did  greatly  hate,  yet  he  cloaked  the 
matter  with  a  sorrowful  countenance,  he  feigned  a 
dolorous  face,  he  often  embraced  the  body  which  he 
himself  slew,  he  played  all  the  parts  of  a  mourning 
person,  saving  there  fell  no  tears  from  his  eyes. 
Thus  he  resembled  us  in  each  point  (who  verily,  and 
not  without  occasion,  had  cause  to  lament  for  our 
master)  laying  all  the  blame  of  this  homicide  unto 
the  boar. 

"  Incontinently  after,  the  sorrowful  news  of  the 
death  of  Tlepolemus  came  to  the  ears  of  all  the 
family,  but  especially  to  unhappy  Charite,  who,  when 
she  had  heard  such  pitiful  tidings,  as  a  mad  and 
raging  woman  ran  up  and  down  the  streets  and  the 
country  fields,  crying  and  howling  lamentably.  All 
the  citizens  gathered  together,  and  such  as  met  her 
bare  her  company  running  towards  the  chase,  so  that 
all  the  city  was  emptied  to  see  the  sight.  When 
z  353 


accurrit   labantique    spiritu  totam    se    super   corpus 

effudit   ac  paenissime  ibidem,   quam    devoverat    ei, 

reddidit  animam.     Sed  aegre  manibus  erepta  suorum 

invita  remansit  in  vita,  funus  vero  toto  feralem  pom- 

pam  prosequente  populo  deducitur  ad  sepulturam. 

7      "  Sed  Thrasyllus  nimium  nimius  clamare,  plangere, 

et  quas  in  primo  maerore  lacrimas  non  habebat,  iam 

scilicet  crescente  gaudio  reddere  et  multis  caritatis 

nominibus  veritatem  ipsam  fallere.      Ilium  amicum, 

coaetaueum,  contubernalem,  fratrem  denique,  addito 

nomine  lugubri,  ciere,  necnon  interdum  manus  Cha- 

rites  a  pulsandis  uberibus  amovere,  luctum  sedare, 

eiulatum  coercere,  verbis  palpantibus  stimulum  do- 

loris    obtundere,   variis     exemplis    multivagi   casus 

solacia    nectere,    cunctis    tamen    mentitae    pietatis 

officiis    studium     contrectandae    mulieris    adhibere 

odiosumque    amorem    suum    perperam    delectando 

nutrire.     Sed  officiis  inferialibus  statim  exactis  puella 

protinus  festinat  ad  maritum  suum  demeare,  cunc- 

tasque  prorsus    pertemptat   vias,  certe  illam  lenem 

otiosamque  nee  telis  ullis  indigentem  sed  placidae 

quieti  consimilem :  inedia  denique  misera  et  incuria 



they  met  the  slain  body  of  Tlepolemus,  Charite 
threw  herself  upon  him,  weeping  and  lamenting 
grievously  for  his  death,  in  such  sort  that  she  would 
have  presently  ended  her  life  upon  the  corpse  of  her 
slain  husband,  whom  she  so  entirely  loved,  had  it  not 
been  that  her  parents  and  friends  did  comfort  her, 
and  hardly  pulled  her  away.  Then  the  body  was 
taken  up,  and  in  funeral  pomp  brought  to  the  city 
and  buried. 

"  In  the  mean  season  Thrasyllus  feigned  much 
sorrow  for  the  death  of  Tlepolemus,  crying  and 
beating  his  breast  beyond  all  measure,  but  in  his  heart 
he  was  well  pleased  and  joyful,  and  the  tears  that  he 
had  not  for  his  former  grief  were  ready  to  come  now 
for  his  gladness.  And  to  counterfeit  very  truth  by 
words  of  kindness,  he  would  come  to  Charite  and 
say :  '  O  what  a  loss  have  I  had,  by  the  death  of  my 
friend,  my  fellow,  my  companion,  my  brother 
Tlepolemus '  (adding  the  name  in  a  melancholy 
voice).  'O  Charite,  comfort  yourself,  pacify  your 
dolour,  refrain  your  weeping,  beat  not  your  breasts.' 
And  so  saying,  he  would  hold  her  hands  and  restrain 
them,  so  that  she  might  not  beat  her  bosom  :  with 
soft  words  he  would  blunt  the  sting  of  her  sorrow, 
and  with  divers  examples  of  evil  fortune  he  endea- 
voured to  comfort  her ;  but  he  spake  and  did  not 
this  for  any  other  intent  but  that  in  guise  of  friend- 
ship he  might  closely  handle  the  woman,  and  so 
nourish  his  odious  love  with  filthy  delight.  How- 
beit,  Charite,  after  the  burial  of  her  husband,  sought 
the  means  to  follow  him,  and  tried  every  way,  but 
especially  that  which  is  most  gentle  and  easy,  nor 
requireth  any  weapon,  but  is  most  like  to  quit-t 
sleep:  for  she  purposed  to  finish  her  life  with 
starvation  and  neglecting  herself,  she  buried  herself 



squalida  tenebris  imis  abscondita  iam  cum  luce  trans- 
egerat.  Sed  Thrasyllus  instantia  pervicaci,  partim 
per  semet  ipsum,  partim  per  ceteros  familiares  ac 
necessaries,  ipsos  denique  puellae  parentes  extorquet 
tandem,  iam  lurore  et  illuvie  paene  collapsa  membra 
lavacro,  cibo  denique  confoveret.  At  ilia  pareiitum 
suorum  alioquin  reverens,  invita  quidem  verum 
religiosae  necessitati  succumbens,  vultu  non  quidem 
hilaro,  verum  paulo  sereniore  obiens,  ut  iubebatur, 
viventium  munia,  prorsus  in  pectore,  immo  vero  pe- 
nitus  in  medullis  luctu  ac  maerore  carpebat  animum 
et  dies  totos  totasque  noctes  insumebat  luctuoso 
desiderio,  et  imagines  defuncti,  quas  ad  habitum  dei 
Liberi  formaverat,  affixo  servitio  divinis  percolens 
honoribus,  ipso  sese  solacio  cruciabat. 
8  "Verum  Thrasyllus  praeceps  alioquin  et  de  ipso 
nomine  temerarius,  priusquam  dolorem  lacrimae 
satiarent  et  percitae  mentis  resideret  furor,  et  in 
sese  nimietatis  senio  lassesceret  luctus,  adhuc  flentem 
maritum,  adhuc  vestes  lacerantem,  adhuc  capillos 
distrahentem  non  dubitavit  de  nuptiis  convenire  et 
imprudentiae  labe  tacita  pectoris  sui  secreta  fraudes- 
que  ineffabiles  detegere.  Sed  Charite  vocem  ne- 
fandam  et  horruit  et  detestata  est  et,  velut  gravi 
tonitru  procellaque  sideris  vel  etiam  ipso  diali 
fulmine  percussa,  corruit  corpus  et  obnubilavit 



deep  in  the  darkness  and  had  done  with  the  light 
for  good  and  all.  But  Thrasyllus  was  very  impor- 
tunate, and  at  length  brought  to  pass  that  at  the 
intercession  both  of  himself  and  of  the  friends  and 
familiars,  and  last  of  the  parents  of  Charite,  she 
somewhat  refreshed  her  body,  that  was  all  befouled 
and  well  nigh  broken,  with  refection  of  meat  and 
bathing.  Howbeit,  she  did  it  unwillingly,  more  at 
the  commandment  of  her  parents  and  the  duty  she 
owed  to  them,  than  for  anything  else :  and  she  wore 
a  calmer,  but  yet  not  a  merry  face,  while  she  went 
about  the  duties  of  the  living,  but  inwardly  she 
tormented  herself  very  greatly  with  grief  and 
mourning :  she  spent  whole  days  and  nights  in 
miserable  longing,  and  there  was  an  image  of  her 
husband,  which  she  had  made  like  unto  Bacchus, 
unto  which  she  rendered  divine  honours  and  services, 
so  that  she  grieved  herself  even  by  her  consolation. 

"  In  the  mean  season  Thrasyllus,  not  being  able 
to  refrain  any  longer,  a  man  bold  and  impatient 
according  to  the  signification  of  his  name,1  before 
Charite  had  assuaged  her  dolours  with  tears,  before 
her  troubled  mind  had  pacified  her  fury,  before  her 
grief  had  become  less  from  its  own  abundance  and 
long  continuance,  while  she  wept  for  her  husband, 
while  she  tare  her  garments  and  rent  her  hair, 
doubted  not  to  demand  her  in  marriage,  and  so 
very  rashly  detected  the  secrets  and  unspeakable 
deceits  of  his  heart.  But  Charite  detested  and 
abhorred  his  demand,  and  as  she  had  been  stricken 
with  some  clap  of  thunder,  with  some  storm,  or  with 
the  lightning  of  Jupiter,  she  presently  fell  down  to 
the  ground  all  amazed  with  a  cloud.  Howbeit  in  the 

1  Thrasyllus  is  derived  from  the  Greek  6pa<rfo,  venturous, 
bold,  rash. 



animam.  Sed  intervallo  revalescente  paulatim  spi- 
ritu,  ferinos  mugitus  iterans  et  iam  scaenam  pessimi 
Thrasylli  perspicieus,  ad  limam  consilii  desiderium 
petitoris  distulit.  Tune  inter  moras  umbra  ilia 
misere  trucidati  Tlepolemi  sanie  cruentam  et  pallore 
deformem  attollens  faciem  quietem  pudicam  inter- 
pellat  uxoris  :  '  Mi  coniux  (quod  tibi  prorsus  ab  alio 
dici  non  licebit)  etsi  pectori  tuo  iam  perimitur  nostri 
memoria,  vel  acerbae  mortis  meae  casus  foedus 
caritatis  intercidit,  quovis  alio  felicius  maritare,  modo 
ne  in  Thrasylli  manum  sacrilegam  convenias,  neve 
sermonem  conferas  nee  mensam  accumbas  nee  toro 
acquiescas.  Fuge  mei  percussoris  cruentam  dex- 
teram  :  noli  parricidio  nuptias  auspicari.  Vulnera 
ilia,  quorum  sanguinem  tuae  lacrimae  proluerunt, 
non  sunt  tota  dentium  vulnera  :  lancea  mali  Thra- 
sylli me  tibi  fecit  alienum ' :  et  addidit  cetera 
9  omnemque  scaenam  sceleris  illuminavit.  At  ilia,  ut 
primum  maesta  quieverat  toro  faciem  impressa,  etiam 
nunc  dormiens  lacrimis  emanantibus  genas  cohumidat 
et  velut  quodam  tormento  inquieta  quieti  excussa, 
luctu  redintegrate  prolixum  eiulat,1  discissaque  in- 
terula  decora  brachia  saevientibus  palmulis  conver- 
berat.  Nee  tamen  cum  quoquam  participatis  noc- 

1  The  end  <>f  ch.  7  and  the  beginniug  of  ch.  8,  as  well  as  the 
end  of  ch.  8  and  the  beginning  of  ch.  9,  have  suffered  by  a  bad 
tear  in  the  parchment  of  the  best  MS.  In  both  passages  the 
text  is  a  little  uncertain. 



end,  when  her  spirits  were  revived  and  that  she 
returned  to  herself  crying  and  shrieking  like  some 
beast,  remembering  all  that  had  passed  with  the 
wicked  Thrasyllus,  she  demanded  respite  to  de- 
liberate and  to  take  advice  on  the  matter. 

"  In  the  mean  season  of  delay  the  shape  of 
Tlepolemus  that  was  slain  so  miserably  appeared  to 
Charite  as  she  chastely  slept,  with  a  pale  and  bloody 
face,  saying :  '  O  my  sweet  wife  (a  name  which  no 
other  person  shall  say  but  I),  even  if  the  memory  of 
me  in  thy  heart  groweth  dim,  or  the  remembrance 
faileth  of  my  pitiful  death,  in  so  much  that  our  bond 
of  love  hath  been  severed,  marry  happily  with  any 
other  person,  so  that  you  marry  not  with  the  traitor 
Thrasyllus  ;  have  no  conference  with  him,  eat  not 
with  him,  lie  not  with  him  ;  avoid  the  bloody  hand 
of  mine  enemy,  let  not  thy  marriage  be  begun  with 
parricide.1  For  those  wounds,  the  blood  whereof 
thy  tears  did  wash  away,  were  not  all  the  wounds 
of  the  teeth  of  the  boar,  but  the  spear  of  wicked 
Thrasyllus  parted  me  from  thee.'  Thus  spoke 
Tlepolemus  unto  his  loving  wife,  and  declared  the 
whole  residue  of  the  damnable  fact.  But  Charite 
lay  as  she  had  first  fallen  asleep,  with  her  face 
buried  in  her  pillow  ;  now  she  wetted  her  cht  t  k> 
with  her  welling  tears  :  and  now  aroused  as  by  some 
new  anguish,  she  began  to  cry  aloud  as  if  sh< 
renewed  her  dolour,  to  tear  her  garments,  and  t<> 
beat  her  comely  arms  with  her  furious  hands  : 
howbeit  she  revealed  the  vision  which  she  saw  to 

*  Parricide  had  in  Roman  K-pal  phraseology  a  much  wi.i.-r 
sense  than  the  English  word.  The  murder  of  u  free  man,  or  an  v 
assassination  or  treachery,  was  called  parricidal ;  and  a  woman  i 
marriage  with  her  husband's  murderer  would  be  in  tin-  sunn- 



turnis  imaginibus,  sed  indicio  facinoris  prorsus 
dissimulate,  et  nequissimum  percussorem  punire  et 
aerumnabili  vitae  sese  subtrahere  tacita  decernit. 
Ecce  rursus  improvidae  voluptatis  detestabilis  petitor 
aures  obseratas  de  nuptiis  obtundens  aderat :  sed 
ilia  clementer  aspemata  sermonem  Thrasylli  astuque 
miro  personata  instanter  garrienti  summisseque 
deprecanti  '  Adhuc '  inquit  '  Tui  fratris  meique 
carissimi  mariti  facies  pulchra  ilia  in  meis  deversatur 
oculis,  adhuc  odor  cinnameus  ambrosei  corporis  per 
nares  meas  percurrit,  adhuc  formosus  Tlepolemus  in 
meo  vivit  pectore.  Boni  ergo  et  optimi  consules,  si 
luctui  legitimo  miserrimae  feminae  necessarium  con- 
cesseris  tempus,  quoad  residuis  mensibus  spatium 
reliquum  compleatur  anni,  quae  res  cum  meum 
pudorem,  turn  etiam  tuum  salutare  commodum 
respicit,  ne  forte  immaturitate  nuptiarum  indigna- 
tione  iusta  manes  acerbos  mariti  ad  exitium  salutis 
tuae  suscitemus.' 

10  "Nee  isto  sermone  Thrasyllus  sobriefactus  vel 
saltern  tempestiva  pollicitatione  recreatus  identidem 
pergit  linguae  sauciantis  susurros  improbos  inurguere, 
quoad  simulanter  revicta  Charite  suscipit :  '  Istud 
equidem  certe  magnopere  deprecanti  concedas 
necesse  est  mihi,  mi  Thrasylle,  ut  interdum  taciti 
clandestinos  coitus  obeamusnecquisquam  persentiscat 
familiarium,  quoad  dies  reliquos  metiatur  annus.' 
Promissioni  fnllaciosae  mulieris  oppressus  succubuit 
Thrasyllus  et  prolixe  consentit  de  furtivo  concubitu, 


no  manner  of  person,  but  dissembling  that  she  knew 
the  truth  of  the  mischief,  devised  silently  with  herself 
how  she  might  be  revenged  on  the  wicked  murderer, 
and  finish  her  own  life,  to  end  and  knit  up  all  sorrow. 
Again  came  Thrasyllus  the  detestable  demander  of 
the  pleasure  that  should  betray  him,  and  wearied 
the  closed  ears  of  Charite  with  talk  of  marriage  ;  but 
she,  gently  refusing  his  communication,  and  colouring 
the  matter  with  passing  craft  in  the  midst  of  his 
earnest  desires  and  humble  prayers,  began  to  say : 
'  Thrasyllus,  you  shall  understand  that  yet  the 
comely  face  of  your  brother l  and  my  husband  is 
always  before  mine  eyes ;  I  smell  yet  the  cinnamon 
scent  of  his  precious  body,  I  yet  feel  Tlepolemus 
alive  in  my  heart :  wherefore  you  shall  do  well  it 
you  grant  to  me,  miserable  woman,  necessary  time 
to  bewail  his  death,  until  after  the  residue  of  a  few 
months  the  whole  year  may  be  expired,  which  thing 
toucheth  as  well  my  shame  as  your  wholesome  profit, 
lest  peradventure  by  our  speedy  and  quick  marriage 
we  should  justly  raise  and  provoke  the  resentful 
spirit  of  my  husband  to  work  your  destruction.' 

"  Howbeit  Thrasyllus  was  not  contented  with  this 
speech,  nor  even  cheered  by  her  hopeful  promise, 
but  more  and  more  was  earnest  upon  her,  to  whisper 
wickedly  in  her  ear  with  his  busy  tongue,  in  so  much 
that  she  was  enforced  to  seem  conquered  by  him, 
and  to  speak  to  him  in  this  manner :  '  My  friend 
Thrasyllus,  this  one  thing  must  thou  grant  to  my 
earnest  prayers,  that  we  should  take  our  pleasure  in 
such  sort  and  so  secret,  that  no  servant  of  the  house 
may  perceive  it  until  the  whole  year  be  complete 
and  finished.'  Then  Thrasyllus,  trusting  the  false 
promises  of  the  woman,  consented  gladly  to  her 
1  Brother-in-aruis,  fellow,  comrade,  as  in  ch.  7  above. 



noctemque  et  opertas  exoptat  ultro  tenebras,  uno  po- 
tiundi  studio  postponens  omnia.  '  Sed  heus  tu,'  inquit 
Charite'Quam  probe  veste  contectus  omnique  comite 
viduatus  prima  vigilia  tacitus  fores  meas  accedas  uno- 
que  sibilo  contentus  nutricem  istara  meam  opperiare, 
quae  claustris  adhaerens  excubabit  adventuituo  :  nee 
setius  patefactis  aedibus  acceptum  te  oullo  lumine 
conscio  ad  meum  perducet  cubiculum.' 

11  "  Placuit   Thrasyllo    scaena    feralium    nuptiarum  : 
nee  sequius  aliquid  suspicatus  sed  expectatione  turbi- 
dus  de  diei  tantum  spatio  et  vesperae  mora  quere- 
batur.      Sed    ubi    sol    tandem    nocti    decessit,    ex 
imperio    Charites     adornatus    et    nutricis    captiosa 
vigilia  deceptus  irrepit  cubiculum  pronus  spei.     Tune 
anus    de    iussu    dominae    blandiens   ei    furtim    de- 
promptis  calicibus    et   oenophoro,  quod    immixtum 
vino  soporiferum  gerebat  venenum,  crebris  potioni- 
bus  avide  ac  secure  haurientem,  mentita    dominae 
tarditatem,    quasi    parentem    assideret     aegrotum, 
facile  sepelivit  ad  somnum.     lamque  eo  ad  omnes 
iniurias    exposito   ac  supinato,   introvocata    Charite 
masculis  animis  impetuque  diro  fremens  invadit  ac 

12  supersistit    sicarium :    'En'    inquit   'Fidus  coniugis 
mei  comes,  en  venator  egregius,  en  carus  maritus. 
Haec  est  ilia  dextera  quae  meum  sanguinem  fudit, 
hoc  pectus    quod   fraudulentas   ambages    in   meum 
concinnavit    exitium,  oculi    isti  quibus  male  placui, 



secret  embraces,  and  was  joyful  in  his  heart  and 
looked  for  night,  when  as  he  might  have  his  purpose, 
preferring  his  inordinate  pleasure  above  all  things  in 
the  world.  '  But  come  you  quietly  about  midnight,' 
said  Charite,  '  Covered  up  and  disguised  without  all 
company.  And  do  but  hiss  at  my  chamber-door, 
and  await;  my  nurse  shall  attend  sitting  before  the 
barrier  for  thy  coming.  Then  shall  she  let  thee  in, 
and  bring  thee  without  any  light,  that  might  betray 
us,  to  my  sleeping-room.' 

"  This  counsel  of  fatal  marriage  pleasedThrasyllus 
marvellously  ;  who,  suspecting  no  harm,  and  in  a  tur- 
moil of  expectation,  did  always  complain  that  the  day 
was  long  and  the  evening  came  not :  but  when  at  last 
the  sun  gave  way  to  the  night,  according  to  Charite's 
commandment  he  disguised  himself  and  went 
straight,  full  of  hope,  to  her  chamber,  where  he 
found  the  nurse  attending  for  him  with  feigned 
diligence.  She  (by  the  appointment  of  her  mistress) 
fed  him  with  flattering  talk,  brought  silently  cups  and 
a  flagon,  and  gave  him  drink  mingled  and  doled 
with  sleepy  drugs,  excusing  the  absence  of  her 
mistress  Charite  by  reason  that  she  attended  on  her 
father  being  sick,  until  such  time  that  with  sweet 
talk  and  operation  of  the  wine  (for  he  drank 
greedily  and  suspected  nothing)  he  fell  in  a  sound 
sleep.  Now  when  he  lay  prostrate  on  the  ground 
ready  to  all  attack,  Charite  (being  called  for) 
came  in,  and  with  manly  courage  and  bold  force 
stood  over  this  sleeping  murderer,  saying  :  '  Behold 
the  faithful  companion  of  my  husband,  behold  this 
valiant  hunter,  behold  my  dear  spouse  ;  this  is  the 
hand  which  shed  my  blood,  this  is  the  heart  which 
hath  devised  so  many  subtle  means  to  work  my 
destruction,  these  be  the  eyes  whom  I  have  pleased 



qui  quodam  modo  futuras  tenebras  auspicantes 
venientes  poenas  antecedunt.  Quiesce  securus, 
beate  somniare.  Non  ego  gladio,  non  ferro  petam  : 
absit  ut  simili  mortis  genere  cum  marito  meo 
coaequeris.  Vivo  tibi  morientur  oculi,  nee  quicquam 
videbis  nisi  dormiens.  Faxo  feliciorem  necem 
inimici  tui  quam  vitam  tuam  sentias.  Lumen  certe 
non  videbis,  manu  comitis  indigebis,  Chariten  non 
tenebis,  nuptias  non  frueris,  nee  mortis  quiete 
recreaberis  nee  vitae  voluptate  laetaberis,  sed  in- 
certum  simulacrum  errabis  inter  Orcum  et  solem ; 
et  diu  quaeres  dexteram  quae  tuas  expugnavit 
pupulas,  quodque  est  in  aerumna  miserrimum, 
nescies  de  quo  queraris.  At  ego  sepulchrum  mei 
Tlepolemi  tuo  luminum  cruore  libabo  et  sanctis 
manibus  eius  istis  oculis  parentabo.  Sed  quid  mora 
temporis  dignum  cruciatum  lucraris  et  meos  forsitan 
tibi  pestiferos  imaginaris  amplexus  ?  Relictis  som- 
nolentis  tenebris  ad  aliam  poenalem  evigila  cali- 
ginem  :  attolle  vacuam  faciem,  vindictam  recognosce, 
infortunium  intellege,  aerumnas  computa.  Sic 
pudicae  mulieri  tui  placuerunt  oculi,  sic  faces  nup- 
tiales  tuos  illuminarunt  thalamos.  Ultrices  habebis 
pronubas,  et  orbitatem  comitem  et  perpetuae  con- 
scientiae  stimulum.' 

13      "Ad  hunc   modum  vaticinata  mulier  acu  crinali 


to  my  ill :  behold  how  in  a  manner  they  foreshewed 
their  own  destined  punishment  when  they  prayed 
for  the  darkness  to  come.  Sleep  careless,  dream 
that  thou  art  in  the  hands  of  the  merciful,  for  I  will 
not  hurt  thee  with  thy  sword  or  with  any  other 
weapon ;  God  forbid  that  I  should  make  thee  equal 
to  my  husband  by  a  like  death.  But  thy  eyes 
shall  fail  thee  still  living,  and  thou  shalt  see  no 
more  save  when  thou  dreamest:  I  will  see  to 
it  that  thou  shalt  think  the  death  of  thine  enemy 
more  sweet  than  thy  life  :  of  a  surety  thou  shalt  see 
no  light,  thou  shalt  lack  the  aid  of  a  leader,  thou 
shalt  not  have  me  as  thou  hopest,  thou  shalt  have  no 
delight  of  my  marriage,  thou  shalt  have  no  rest  in 
the  quiet  of  death,  and  yet  living  thou  shalt  have  no 
joy,  but  wander  between  the  light  of  day  and  the 
darkness  of  hell  as  an  unsure  image  :  thou  shalt  seek 
for  the  hand  that  pricked  out  thy  eyes,  yet  shalt 
thou  not  know  (the  most  grievous  part  in  all  calamity) 
of  whom  thou  shouldst  complain  :  I  will  make  libation 
with  the  blood  of  thine  eyes  upon  the  grave  of  my 
husband,  I  will  pacify  his  holy  shade  with  these  eyes 
of  thine.  But  why  dost  thou  gain  respite  of  thy  due 
torment  through  my  delay  ?  Perhaps  thou  dreamest 
that  thou  embracest  me  in  thine  arms  to  thine  own 
ruin :  leave  off  the  darkness  of  sleep,  and  awake 
thou  to  receive  a  penal  deprivation  of  light :  lift  up 
thy  sightless  face,  regard  thy  vengeance  and  evil 
fortune,  reckon  thy  misery  :  so  pleaseth  thine  eyes 
to  a  chaste  woman,  so  have  the  nuptial  torches 
lightened  thy  couch,  that  thou  shalt  have  the  Furies 
to  be  women  of  thy  bedchamber,  blindness  to  be 
thy  companion,  and  an  everlasting  prick  of  remorse 
to  thy  miserable  conscience.' 

"When  she  had  prophesied  in  these  words,  she 


capite  deprompta  Thrasylli  convulnerat  tola  lumina 
eumque  prorsus  exoculatum  relinquens,  dum  dolore 
nescio  crapulam  cum  somno  discutit,  arrepto  nudo 
gladio  quo  se  Tlepolemus  solebat  incingere,  per 
mediam  civitatem  cursu  furioso  proripit  se,  procul 
dubio  nescioquod  scelus  gestiens  et  recta  monimentum 
mariti  contendit.  At  nos  et  omnis  populus  nudatis 
totis  aedibus  studiose  consequimur,  hortati  mutuo 
ferrum  vesanis  extorquere  manibus.  Sed  Charite 
capulum  Tlepolemi  propter  assistens  gladioque  ful- 
genti  singulos  abigens,  ubi  fletus  uberes  et  lamenta- 
tiones  varias  cunctorum  intuetur,  '  Abicite '  inquit, 
'  Importunas  lacrimas,  abicite  luctum  tneis  virtutibus 
alienum.  Vindicavi  in  mei  mariti  cruentum  peremp- 
torem,  punita  sum  funestum  mearum  nuptiarum 
praedonem.  lam  tempus  est  ut  isto  gladio  deorsus 
14  ad  meum  Tlepolemum  viam  quaeram.'  Et  enarratis 
ordine  singulis  quae  sibi  per  somnium  nuntiaverat 
maritus  quoque  astu  Thrasyllum  inductum  petisset, 
ferro  sub  papillam  dexteram  transadacto  corruit  et  in 
suo  sibi  pervolutata  sanguine  postremo  balbutiens 
incerto  sermone  proflavit  animam  virilem.  Tune 
propere  familiares  miserae  Charites  accuratissime 
corpus  ablutum  unita  sepultura  ibidem  marito  per- 
petuam  coniugem  reddidere.  Thrasyllus  vero  cognitis 
omnibus,  nequiens  idoneum  exitum  praesenti  cladi 



took  a  great  needle  from  her  head  and  pricked  out 
both  his  eyes:  which  done,  leaving  him  blind  and 
waking  in  great  pain  (though  he  knew  not  whence  it 
came)  from  his  drunkenness  and  sleep,  she  by  and 
by  caught  the  naked  sword  which  her  husband 
Tlepolemus  accustomed  to  wear,  and  ran  throughout 
all  the  city  like  a  mad  woman  towards  the  sepulchre 
uf  her  husband,  doubtless  bent  on  some  wild  purpose. 
Then  we  with  all  the  citizens  left  our  houses  and  ran 
incontinently  after  her,  exhorting  each  other  to  take 
the  sword  out  of  her  furious  hands ;  but  she,  clasping 
about  the  tomb  of  Tlepolemus,  kept  us  off  with  her 
naked  weapon,  and  when  she  perceived  that  every 
one  of  us  wept  and  lamented,  she  spake  in  this  sort : 
'  I  pray  you,  my  friends,  let  there  be  no  unasked 
tears  for  me  nor  laments  unworthy  of  my  courage, 
for  I  am  revenged  of  the  death  of  my  husband,  I 
have  punished  deservedly  the  wicked  breaker  of  our 
marriage  1 ;  now  is  it  time  to  seek  out  with  this  sword 
the  way  to  my  sweet  Tlepolemus.'  And  therewithal, 
after  she  had  made  relation  of  the  whole  matter  which 
was  declared  unto  her  by  the  vision  of  her  husband 
which  she  saw,  and  told  by  what  means  she  deceived 
Thrasyllus,  thrusting  the  sword  under  her  right 
breast  and  wallowing  in  her  own  blood,  she  babbled 
some  uncertain  words  and  at  length  with  manly 
courage  yielded  up  the  ghost.  Then  immediately 
the  friends  of  miserable  Charite  did  wash  carefully 
her  body  and  bury  her  within  the  same  sepulchre  with 
Tlepolemus  to  be  his  spouse  for  ever.  Thrasyllus, hear- 
ing all  the  matter,  and  knowing  that  by  no  death  he 
could  fitly  atone  for  this  present  ruin,  for  he  thought 

l  The  Latin  can  also  (and  perhaps  better)  bear  the  meaning 
of  "the  robber  of  my  marriage"  in  the  sense  of  one  who 
would  force  her  to  marry  him  by  fraud  or  violence. 



reddere  certusque  tanto  facinori  nee  gladium  sufficere, 
sponte   delatus   ibidem   ad    sepulchrum,    '  Ultronea 
vobis,  infesti   Manes,  en  adest  victima '    saepe  cla- 
mitans,  valvis  super  sese  diligenter  obseratis  inedia 
statuit  elidere  sua  sententia  damnatum  spiritum." 
15      Haec  ille  longos  trahens  suspiritus  et  nonnunquam 
illacriraans    graviter    affectis    rusticis    annuntiabat. 
Tune  illi  mutati  dominii    novitatem    metuentes   et 
infortunium  domus  herilis  altius  miserantes  fugere 
comparant.     Sed  equorum  magister  qui  me  curandum 
niagna  ille  quidem  commendatione  susceperat,  quid- 
quid  in  casula  pretiosum  conditumque  servabat  meo 
atque  aliorum  iumentorum  dorso  repositum  asportans 
sedes   pristinas   deserit.      Gerebamus    infantulos  et 
muliereSj  gerebamus  pullos,  anseres,  haedos,  catellos, 
et  quidquid  infirmo  gradu  fugam  morabatur,  iiostris 
quoque  pedibus  ambulabat.    Nee  me  pondus  sarcinae, 
quanquam  enormis,  urguebat,  quippe  gaudiali  fuga 
detestabilem  ilium  exsectorem  virilitatis  meae  relin- 

Silvosi  mentis  asperum  permensi  iugum  rursusque 
reposita  camporum  spatia  pervecti,  iam  vespera  se- 
mitam  tenebrante,  pervenimus  ad  quoddam  castellum 
frequens  et  opulens,  unde  nos  incolae  nocturna,  immo 
vero  matutina  etiam  prohibebant  egressione :  lupos 
enim  numerosos,  grandes  et  vastis  corporibus  sarci- 
nosos  ac  niinia  ferocitate  saevientes,  passim  rapinis 


his  sword  was  not  sufficient  to  revenge  so  great  a  crime, 
at  length  went  of  himself  to  the  same  sepulchre,  and 
cried  with  a  loud  voice,  saying:  'O  ye  dead  spirits 
whom  I  have  so  highly  offended,  receive  me ;  behold 
I  make  sacrifice  unto  you  with  my  body ' :  which 
said  he  closed  the  doors  of  the  sepulchre  upon  him, 
purposing  to  famish  himself,  and  so  finish  his  life 
there  and  yield  up  his  accursed  ghost  in  sorrow." 

These  things  the  young  man  with  pitiful  sighs 
and  tears  declared  unto  the  cowherds  and  shepherds, 
which  caused  them  all  to  weep  ;  but  they,  tearing  to 
become  subject  unto  new  masters,  and  pitying  deeply 
the  misery  of  their  master's  house,  prepared  them- 
selves to  depart  away ;  but  by  and  by  the  horse- 
keeper,  to  whom  the  charge  of  me  so  carefully 
had  been  committed,  brought  forth  all  the  precious 
things  that  were  stored  in  his  cottage,  and  buU-d 
me  and  other  horses  withal,  and  so  departed  thence 
from  his  former  place :  we  bare  women,  children, 
pullets,  geese,  kids,  whelps,  and  other  things  which 
were  not  able  to  keep  pace  with  us,  which  so 
travelled  upon  our  feet.  As  for  that  which  I  bare 
upon  my  back,  although  it  was  a  mighty  burden, 
yet  seemed  it  but  light  because  I  was  very  glad  to 
depart  and  leave  him  that  most  terribly  had  ap- 
pointed to  geld  me. 

When  we  had  passed  over  a  great  mountain  full 
of  trees  and  were  come  again  into  the  open  fields, 
behold  we  approached  nigh  to  a  fair  and  rich  castle, 
where  it  was  told  unto  us  that  we  were  not  able  to 
pass  in  our  journey  that  night,  nay,  nor  in  the  early 
morning  either,  by  reason  of  the  great  number  of 
terrible  wolves  which  were  in  the  country  about, 
besieging  all  the  roads;  so  great  in  their  body  ami 
fierce  and  cruel,  that  they  put  every  man  in  fear,  in 
2  A  S69 


assuetos   infestare   cunctam  illam  regionem,  iamque 
ipsas  vias  obsidere  et  in  modum  latronum  praeter- 
euntes   aggredi,  imrao  etiam    vesana   fame   rabidos 
finitiraas  expugnare  villas  exitiumque  inertissiraorum 
pecudum   ipsis    iam    humanis    capitibus    imminere. 
Denique  ob  iter  illud,  qua  nobis  erat  commeandum, 
iacere  semesa  hominum   corpora  suisque  visceribus 
nudatis  ossibus  cuncta  candere  ac  per  hoc  nos  quo- 
que  summa  cautione  viae  reddi   debere    idque   vel 
in  primis  observitare,  ut  luce  clara  et  die  iam  pro- 
vecto  et  sole  florido,  vitantes   undique  latentes  in- 
sidias,  cum  et  ipso  lumine  dirarum  bestiarum  repi- 
gratur  impetus,  non  laciniatim  disperse  sed  cuneatim 
stipato    commeatu    difficultates   illas    transabiremus. 
i 6  Sed  nequissimi   fugitivi   ductores  illi    nostri  caecae 
festinationis  temeritate  ac  metu  incertae  insecutionis, 
spreta  salubri  monitione  nee  expectata  luce  proxuma, 
circa  tertiam  ferme  vigiliam  noctis  onustos  nos  ad 
viam  propellunt.     Tune  ego  metu  praedicti  periculi 
quantum  pote  turbae  medius  et  inter  conferta  iu- 
menta  latenter   absconditus   clunibus    meis   ab    ag- 
gressionibus   ferinis   consulebam,    iamque  me  cursu 
celeri  ceteros  equos  antecellentem  mirabantur  omnes  ; 
sed  ilia  pernicitas  non  erat  alacritatis  meae  sed  for- 
midinis  indicium.     Denique  mecum  ipse  reputabam, 
Pegasum   inclutum    ilium    metu    magis    volaticum 
fuisse  ac  per  hoc  merito  pinnatum   proditum,  dum 
in    altum  et   adusque   caelum   sussilit    ac    resultat, 


such  sort  that  they  would  invade  and  set  upon  such 
which  passed  by  like  thieves,  and  devour  them  and 
their  beasts  :  and  sometimes  they  would  be  mad 
with  hunger  and  would  attack  the  country-farms 
that  lay  hard  by,  and  that  the  same  death  as  of  the 
peaceful  cattle  would  await  the  men  therein.  More- 
over, we  were  advertised  that  there  lay  in  the  way 
where  we  should  pass  many  dead  bodies,  half  eaten 
and  torn  with  wolves,  and  their  inward  flesh  was  all 
torn  away  and  the  white  of  their  bones  was  every- 
where to  be  seen.  Wherefore  we  were  willed  to  use 
all  caution  in  our  going,  and  to  observe  this  above 
all,  .that  in  broad  light,  when  the  day  was  well  on 
and  the  sun  was  high,  and  the  fierceness  of  such 
horrible  beasts  was  constrained  by  the  light,  to  go 
close  and  round  together,  avoiding  all  hidden  lairs, 
whereby  we  might  pass  and  escape  all  perils  and 
dangers.  But  (notwithstanding  this  good  counsel) 
our  caitiff  drivers  were  so  covetous  to  go  forward, 
being  rash  in  their  blind  haste,  and  so  fearful  of 
pursuit,  that  they  never  heeded  the  advice  nor 
stayed  till  the  morning :  but  In- ing  not  long  past 
midnight,  they  made  us  be  laden  and  trudge  in 
our  way  apace.  .Then  I,  fearing  the  great  danger 
which  was  foretold,  ran  amongst  the  middle  of  the 
other  horses  and  hid  there  as  deep  as  I  could,  to  the 
end  I  might  defend  and  save  my  poor  buttocks  from 
the  wolves :  whereat  every  man  much  marvelled  to 
see  that  I  scoured  away  swifter  than  the  other  horses  : 
but  such  my  agility,  was  not  to  get  me  any  praise 
for  speed,  but  rather  a  sign  of  fear.  At  that  time 
I  remembered  with  myself  that  the  valiant  horse 
Pegasus  did  fly  rather  for  fear  and  for  that  was 
deservedly  called  winged,  that  he  did  leap  up  in  the 
air  and  skip  up  to  the  very  sky,  more  to  avoid  the 



formidans  scilicet  igniferae  morsum  Chimaerae.  Nam 
et  illi  pastores  qui  nos  agebant  in  speciem  proelii 
manus  obarmaverant :  hie  lanceam,  ille  venabulum, 
alius  gerebat  spicula,  fustem  alius,  sed  et  saxa,  quae 
salebrosa  semita  largiter  subministrabat ;  erant  qui 
sudes  praeacutas  attollerent,  plerique  tamen  ardenti- 
bus  facibus  proterrebant  feras  :  nee  quicquam  praeter 
unicam  tubam  deerat  quin  acies  esset  proeliaris.  Sed 
nequicquam  frustra  timorem  ilium  satis  inanem  per- 
functi  longe  peiores  inhaesimus  laqueos  :  nam  lupi, 
forsitan  confertae  iuventutis  strepitu  vel  certe  nimia 
luce  flammarum  deterriti  vel  etiam  aliorsum  gras- 
santes,  nulli  contra  nos  aditum  tulerunt  ac  ne  procul 
17  saltern  ulli  comparuerant.  Villae  vero,  quam  tune 
forte  praeteribamus,  coloni,  multitudinem  nostram 
latrones  rati,  satis  agentes  rerum  suarum  eximieque 
trepidi  canes  rabidos  et  immanes  et  quibusvis  lupis 
et  ursis  saeviores,  quos  ad  tutelae  praesidia  curiose 
fuerant  alumnati,  iubilationibus  solitis  et  cuiuscemodi 
vocibus  nobis  inhortantur,  qui  praeter  genuinam 
ferocitatem  tumultu  suorum  exasperati  contra  nos 
ruunt,  et  undique  laterum  circumfusi  passim  insiliunt 
ac  sine  ullo  dilectu  iumenta  simul  et  homines  lace- 
rant  diuque  grassati  plerosque  prosternunt.  Cerneres 
non  tarn  Hercule  memorandum  quam  miserandum 
etiam  spectaculum,  canes  copiosos  ardentibus  animis 
alios  fugientes  arripere,  alios  stantibus  inhaerere, 
quosdam  iacentes  inscendere  et  per  omnem  nostrum 
commeatum  morsibus  ambulare.  Ecce  tanto  peri- 

dangerous  bite  of  fiery  Chimaera  than  for  anything 
else.  For  the  very  shepherds  which  drove  us  before 
them  were  well  armed  like  warriors  for  battle :  one 
had  a  spear,  another  had  a  hunting  lance,  some  had 
darts,  some  clubs,  some  also  gathered  up  great  stones, 
of  which  there  were  many  upon  that  rough  road, 
some  held  up  sharpened  stakes,  and  most  feared  away 
the  wolves  with  light  firebrands  :  finally  we  lacked 
nothing  to  make  up  an  army  but  only  trumpets. 
But  when  we  had  passed  these  dangers  not  without 
small  fear,  though  it  was  vain  and  empty,  all  was  in 
vain,  for  we  fortuned  to  fall  into  a  snare  much 
worse ;  for  the  wolves  came  not  upon  us,  either 
because  of  the  great  noise  and  multitude  of  our 
company,  or  else  because  of  our  firebrands,  or  perad- 
venture  they  were  gone  to  some  other  place,  for  we 
could  see  none,  even  afar  off.  But  the  inhabitants  of 
the  next  village  (supposing  that  we  were  thieves  by 
reason  of  our  great  multitude)  for  the  defence  of 
their  own  substance,  and  for  the  fear  they  were  in, 
set  great  and  mighty  mastiffs  upon  us,  worse  than  any 
wolves  or  bears,  which  they  had  kept  and  nourished 
for  the  safety  of  their  houses ;  who  were  both  by 
nature  very  fierce  and  were  urged  on  by  their  masters, 
holloing  after  their  wont  and  driving  them  with  all 
manner  of  cries ;  they,  compassing  us  round  about, 
leaped  on  every  side,  tearing  us  with  their  teeth, 
both  man  and  beast,  in  such  sort  that  they 
wounded  and  pulled  many  of  us  to  the  ground. 
Verily,  it  was  a  famous  but  a  pitiful  sight  to  see  so 
many  dogs  all  mad  with  fury,  some  following  such  as 
fled,  some  invading  such  as  stood  still,  some  leaping 
upon  those  which  lay  prostrate,  and  going  through- 
out the  whole  of  our  company  with  savage  biting. 
Behold,  upon  this,  another  worse  danger  ensued; 



culo  malum  niaius  insequitur  :  de  summis  enimtectis 
ac  de  proxumo  colle  rusticani  illi  saxa  super  nos 
raptim  devolvunt,  ut  discernere  prorsus  nequire- 
mus  qua  potissimura  caveremus  clade,  comminus 
canum  an  eminus  lapidum.  Quorum  quidem  unuS 
caput  mulieris,  quae  meum  dorsum  residebat,  re- 
pente  percussit :  quo  dolore  commota  statim  fletu 
cum  clamore  sublato  maritum  suum  pastorem  ilium 
j  8  suppetiatum  ciet.  At  ille  deum  fidem  clamitans  et 
cruorem  uxoris  abstergens  altius  quiritabat :  "  Quid 
miseros  homines  et  laboriosos  viatores  tarn  crudelibus 
animis  invaditis  atque  obteritis?  Quas  praedas 
inhiatis  ?  Quae  damna  vindicatis  ?  At  non  speluncas 
ferarum  vel  cautes  incolitis  barbarorum,  ut  humano 
sanguine  profusogaudeatis."  Vix  haec  dicta,  et  statim 
lapidum  congestus  cessavit  imber  et  infestorum  canum 
revocata  conquievit  procella.  Unus  illinc  denique  de 
summo  cupressus  cacumine  "  At  nos  "  inquit  "  Non 
vestrorum  spoliorum  cupidine  latrocinamur,  sed  hanc 
ipsam  cladem  de  vestris  protelamus  manibus :  iam 
denique  pace  tranquilla  securi  potestis  incedere."  Sic 
ille,  sed  nos  plurifariam  vulnerati  reliquam  viam 
capessimus,  alius  lapidis,  alius  morsus  vulnera  refer- 
entes,  universi  tamen  saucii. 

Aliquanto  denique  viae  permenso  spatio  pervenimus 
ad  nemus  quoddam  proceris  arboribus  consitum  et 
pratentibus  virectis  amoenum,  ubi  placuit  illis  ductori- 
bus  nostris  refectui  paululum  conquiescere  corporaque 
sua  diverse  laniata  sedulo  recurare.  Ergo  passim 
prostrati  solo  primum  fatigatos  animos  recuperare  ac 


the  inhabiters  of  the  town  stood  upon  their  roofs 
and  the  hills  hard  by,  throwing  great  stones  upon 
our  heads,  so  that  we  could  not  tell  whether  it 
were  best  for  us  to  avoid  the  gaping  mouths  of  the 
dogs  at  hand,  or  the  peril  of  the  stones  afar.  Amongst 
whom  there  was  one  that  hurled  a  great  flint  upon 
the  head  of  a  woman  which  sat  upon  my  back ; 
who  cried  out  piteously,  desiring  her  husband,  the 
shepherd,  to  help  her.  Then  he  (coming  to  wipe  off 
the  blood  from  his  wife)  began  to  complain  in  this 
sort,  calling  upon  God's  name  :  "  Alas,  masters,  what 
mean  you  to  trouble  us  poor  labouring  men  and 
wayfarers  and  so  cruelly  to  overcome  us?  What 
think  you  to  gain  by  us  ?  What  mean  you  to  revenge 
yourselves  upon  us,  that  do  you  no  harm  ?  You  dwell 
not  in  caves  or  dens,  you  are  no  people  barbarous 
that  you  should  delight  in  effusion  of  human  blood." 
At  these  words  the  tempest  of  stones  did  cease,  and 
the  storm  of  the  dogs  was  called  back  and  vanished 
away.  Then  one  (standing  on  the  top  of  a  great 
cypress-tree)  spake  unto  us,  saying :  "  Think  you  not, 
masters,  that  we  do  this  to  the  intent  to  rifle  or  take 
away  any  of  your  goods,  but  for  the  safeguard  ot 
ourselves  and  family  from  a  like  slaughter  at  your 
hands;  now  in  God's  name  you  may  depart  away." 
So  we  went  forward,  some  wounded  with  stones, 
some  bitten  with  dogs,  but  generally  there  was  none 
which  escaped  free. 

When  we  had  gone  a  good  part  of  our  way  we 
came  to  a  certain  wood  environed  with  great  trees, 
and  compassed  about  with  pleasant  meadows,  where 
the  shepherds,  our  guides,  appointed  to  continue  a 
certain  space  for  rest,  to  cure  their  divers  wounds 
and  sores.  Then  they  sat  down  on  the  ground  to 
refresh  their  weary  minds,  and  afterwards  they 



dehinc  vulneribus  medelas  varias  adhibere  festinant : 
hie  cruorem  praeterfluentis  aquae  rore  deluere, 
ille  spongeis  inacidatis  tumores  comprimere,  alius 
fasciolis  hiantes  vincire  plagas.  Ad  istum  modum 
saluti  suae  quisque  consulebat. 

19  Interea  quidam  senex  de  summo  colle  prospectat, 
quern  circum  capellae  pascentes  opilionem  esse  pro- 
fecto  clamabant.     Eum  rogavit  unus  e  nostris  ha- 
beretne  venui  lactem  vel  adhuc  liquidum*  vel  in  ca- 
seum    recentem    inchoatum.       At    ille    diu    capite 
quassanti  "  Vos  autem  "  inquit  "  De  cibo  vel  poculo 
vel  omnino  ulla  refectione  nunc  cogitatis  ?     An  nulli 
scitis  quo  loco  consederitis  ?  "  Et  cum  dicto  conductis 
oviculis  conversus  longe  recessit.     Quae  vox  eius  et 
fuga    pastoribus    nostris    non   mediocrem    pavorem 
incussit :  ac  dum  perterriti  de  loci  qualitate  sciscitari 
gestiunt  nee  est  qui  doceat,  senex  alius,  magnus  ille 
quidem,  gravatus  annis,  totus  in  baculum  pronus  et 
lassum    trahens    vestigium,   ubertim    lacrimans    per 
viam    proximat,   visisque   nobis   cum    fletu   maximo 
singulorum  iuvenum  genua  contingens  sic  adorabat : 

20  "  Per  fortunas  vestrosque  genios,  sic  ad  meae  senec- 
tutis  spatia  validi  laetique  veniatis,  decepto  seni  sub- 
sistite  meumque  parvulum  ab  inferis  ereptum  canis 
meis  reddite.     Nepos  namque  meus  et  itineris  huius 
suavis    comes    dum     forte    passerem     incantantem 
saepiculae  consectatur  arripere,  delapsus  in  proxumam 
foveam,  quae  fruticibus  imis  subpatet,  in  extreme  iam 
vitae  consistit  periculo,  quippe  cum  de  fletu  ac  voce 


sought  for  medicines  to  heal  their  bodies:  some 
washed  away  their  blood  with  the  Mater  of  the 
running  river,  some  laid  upon  their  bruises  sponges 
steeped  with  vinegar,  some  stopped  their  wounds 
with  clouts ;  in  this  manner  every  one  provided  for 
his  own  safety. 

In  the  mean  season  we  perceived  an  old  man  that 
looked  from  the  top  of  an  hill,  who  seemed  to  be  a 
shepherd  by  reason  of  the  goats  and  sheep  that  fed 
round  about  him  :  then  one  of  our  company  demanded 
whether  he  had  any  milk  to  sell,  whether  new  drawn 
or  freshly  made  into  cheese.  To  whom  he  made 
answer,  shaking  his  head,  saying :  "  Do  you  think 
now  of  any  meat  or  drink,  or  any  other  refection 
here  ?  Know  none  of  you  in  what  place  you  be  ?  " 
And  therewithal  he  took  his  sheep  and  drove  them 
away  as  fast  as  he  might  possible.  This  answer  and 
his  fleeing  away  made  our  shepherds  greatly  to  fear, 
so  that  they  thought  of  nothing  else  but  to  enquire 
what  country  they  were  in  :  howbeit,  they  saw  no 
manner  of  person  of  whom  they  might  demand.  At 
length,  as  they  were  thus  in  doubt,  they  perceived 
another  old  man  very  tall  and  heavy  with  years,  with 
a  staff  in  his  hand  and  very  weary  footsteps,  who, 
approaching  nigh  to  our  company,  began  to  weep 
greatly  and  complain,  embracing  the  knees  of  every 
one  and  saying: 

"  Alas,  masters,  I  pray  you  by  your  fates  and  lucky 
spirits,  may  you  come  to  the  years  of  old  age  strong 
and  joyful,  as  you  shall  succour  me,  miserable  caitiff, 
and  restore  my  little  one  from  Hell  to  my  white  hairs 
again.  For  he,  my  grandson,  the  dear  companion  of 
my  path,  by  following  a  sparrow  that  sang  upon  an 
hedge,  is  fallen  into  a  ditch  hereby  that  lay  open  at 
the  root  of  the  shrubs,  and  verily  I  think  he  is  in 



ipsius  avum  sibi  saepicule  clamitantis  vivere  ilium 
quidein  sentiam,  sed  per  corporis,  ut  videtis,  mei 
defectam  valitudinem  opitulari  nequeam.  At  vobis 
aetatis  et  roboris  beneficio  facile  est  suppetiari 
miserrimo  seni  puerumque  ilium  novissimum  suc- 
cessionis  meae  atque  unicam  stirpem  sospitem  mihi 

21  Sic  deprecantis  suamque  canitiem  distrahentis 
totos  quidein  miseruit ;  sed  unus  prae  ceteris  et  animo 
fortior  et  aetate  iuvenior  et  corpore  validior,  quique 
solus  praeter  alios  incolumis  proelium  superius  eva- 
serat,  exsurgit  alacer  et  percontatus  quonam  locipuer 
ille  decidisset,  monstrantem  digito  non  longe  frutices 
horridos  senem  ilium  impigre  comitatur.  Ac  dum 
pabulo  nostro  suaque  cura  refecti  sarcinulis  quisque 
sumptis  suis  viam  capessunt,  clamore  primum  nomi- 
natim  cientes  ilium  iuvenem  frequenter  inclamant ; 
mox  mora  diutina  commoti  mittunt  e  suis  arcessi- 
torem  unum,  qui  requisitum  comitem  tempestivae 
viae  commonefactum  reduceret.  At  ille  modicum 
commoratus  refert  sese  buxanti  pallore  trepidus, 
miraque 1  super  conserve  suo  renuntiat :  conspica- 
tum  se  quippe  supinato  illi  et  iam  ex  maxima  parte 
consumpto  immanem  draconem  mandentem  insistere 
nee  ullum  usquam  miserrimum  senem  comparere 
ilium.  Qua  re  cognita  et  cum  pastoris  sermone  col- 
lata,  qui  saevum  prorsus  hunc  ilium  nee  alium  lo- 
corum  inquilinum  praeminabatur,  pestilenti  deserta 
regione  velociori  se  fuga  proripiunt  nosque  pellunt 

22  crebris  tundentes  fustibus.     Celerrime  denique  longo 

i  MSS  mira.    Some  connecting  particle  is  needed,  and  we 
must  write  either  et  mira  or  miraque. 



danger  of  death.  As  for  me,  though  I  know  from 
his  own  voice,  crying  oft  upon  his  grandsire,  that  he 
yet  liveth,  I  am  not  able  to  help  him  by  reason  of 
my  old  age,  but  you,  that  are  so  valiant  and  lusty, 
may  easily  help  me  herein  a  miserable  old  man, 
and  deliver  me  my  boy,  last  of  my  heirs  and  single 
offspring  of  my  race  that  is  yet  left  alive." 

These  words  and  his  tearing  of  his  white  and  aged 
hair  made  us  all  to  pity  him  :  and  the  youngest  and 
stoutest  of  heart  in  our  company,  and  strongest 
of  body,  who  alone  escaped  unhurt  from  the  late 
skirmish  of  dogs  and  stones,  rose  up  quickly,  de- 
manding in  what  ditch  the  boy  was  fallen.  "  Marry," 
said  he,  "Yonder,"  and  pointing  with  his  finger, 
brought  him  to  a  great  thicket  of  bushes  and  thorn, 
where  they  both  entered  in.  In  the  mean  season, 
after  that  we  had  well  refreshed  ourselves  with  our 
grazing  and  they  had  cured  their  wounds,  each  took 
up  his  packs,  purposing  to  depart  away.  And  because 
we  would  not  go  away  without  the  young  man  our 
fellow,  the  shepherds  whistled  and  called  for  him  by. 
his  name  ;  but  when  he  gave  no  answer  they  feared 
because  of  his  long  absence  and  sent  one  of  their 
company  to  seek  him  out,  and  to  tell  him  that  it  was 
now  time  to  set  forth  on  the  journey  with  us.  But  he 
after  a  while  returned  again  with  an  ashen-pale  face, 
trembling,  with  strange  and  sorrowful  news  of  his 
fellow,  saying  that  he  saw  him  lying  upon  his  back  and 
a  terrible  dragon  eating  and  devouring  him :  and  as  for 
the  miserable  old  man,  he  could  see  him  in  no  pl.uv. 
When  they  heard  this  (remembering  likewise  the 
words  of  the  first  old  man  that  had  warned  them  of 
this  and  no  other  habitant  of  the  place)  they  ran 
away,  beating  us  before  them,  to  fly  from  this  desert 
and  pestilent  country.  Then  after  we  had  very 



itinere  confecto  pagum  quendam  accedimus,  ibique 
totam  perquiescimus  noctem  ;  ubi  coeptum  facinus 
oppido  memorabile  narrare  cupio. 

Servus  quidam,  cui  cunctam  familiae  tutelara  domi- 
nus  permiserat  suus,  quique  possessionera  maximam 
illam,  in  quam  deverteramus,  villicabat,  habens  ex 
eodem  famulitio  conservam  coniugam,  liberae  cuius- 
dara  extrariaeque  mulieris  flagrabat  cupidine.  Quo 
dolore  paelicatus  uxor  eius  instricta  cunctas  mariti 
rationes  et  quicquid  horreo  reconditura  continebatur 
admoto  combussit  igne.  Nee  tali  damno  tori  sui  con- 
tumeliam  vindicasse  contenta,  iam  contra  sua  saeviens 
viscera  laqueum  sibi  nectit  infantulumque,  quern  de 
eodem  marito  iamdudum  susceperat,  eodem  funiculo 
nectit  seque  per  altissimum  puteum,  appendicem  par- 
vulum  trahens  praecipitat.  Quam  mortem  dominus 
eorum  aegerrime  sustinens  arreptum  servulum,  qui 
causam  tanti  sceleris  uxori  suae  praestiterat,  nudum 
ac  totum  melle  perlitum  firmiter  alligavit  arbori  ficul- 
neae,  cuius  in  ipso  carioso  stipite  inhabitant!  urn  formi- 
carum  nidificia  borribant  et  ultro  citro  commeabant 
multiiuga  scaturigine.  Quae  simul  dulcem  ac  mel- 
litum  corporis  nidorem  persentiscunt,  parvis  quidem 
sed  numerosis  et  continuis  morsiunculis  penitus  in- 
haerentes,  per  longi  temporis  cruciatum  ita,  carnibus 
atque  ipsis  visceribus  adesis,  homine  consumpto  mem- 
bra nudarunt,  ut  ossa  tantum  viduata  pulpis  nitore 
nirnio  candentia  funestae  cohaererent  arbori. 
23  Hac  quoque  detestabili  deserta  mansione,  paganos 


quickly  passed  a  great  part  of  our  journey  we  came 
to  a  certain  village,  where  we  lay  all  ifight.  But 
hearken,  and  I  will  tell  you  a  great  and  notable 
mischief  that  happened  there. 

You  shall  understand  that  there  was  a  servant  to 
whom  his  master  had  committed  the  whole  govern- 
ment of  his  house,  and  he  was  bailiff  of  the  great  lodg- 
ing where  we  lay  :  this  servant  had  married  a  maiden, 
a  fellow-slave  of  the  same  house,  howbeit  he  burned 
greatly  for  love  of  a  free  woman  of  another  house. 
Therewith  was  his  wife  so  highly  displeased  and  be- 
came so  jealous,  that  she  gathered  together  all  her  hus- 
band's substance,  with  his  tallies  and  books  of  accounts, 
and  burned  them  with  fire.  She  was  not  contented 
•with  this  damage,  nor  thought  that  she  had  so  avenged 
the  wrong  done  to  her  bed,  but  she  took  a  cord,  and 
now  raging  against  her  own  bowels,  she  bound  her 
child  which  she  had  by  her  husband  about  her  middle 
and  cast  herself  headlong  into  a  deep  pit,  carrying 
her  babe  with  her.  The  master,  taking  in  evil  part 
the  death  of  these  twain,  took  his  servant  which  had 
made  for  his  wife  the  cause  of  this  murder,  and  after 
that  he  had  first  put  off  all  his  apparel,  he  anointed 
his  body  with  honey,  and  then  bound  him  sure  to  a 
fig-tree,  where  in  a  rotten  stock  a  great  number  of 
pismires  or  ants  had  built  their  nests,  and  ran  always 
about  in  great  multitudes  like  sprinkling  water.  The 
pismires,  after  they  had  felt  the  savour  and  sweetness 
of  the  honey,  came  upon  his  body,  and  by  little  and 
little  but  unfailing  gnawing,  in  continuance  of  time 
with  long  torturing  devoured  all  his  flesh  and  his 
vitals,  in  such  sort  that  there  remained  on  the  fatal 
tree  nothing  of  his  flesh  but  only  his  shining  white 

This  was  declared  unto  us  by  the  inhabitants  of 



in  summo  luctu  relinquentes,  rursum  pergimus  dieque 
tola  campestres  emensi  vias  civitatem  quandam  popu- 
losam  et  nobilem  iam  fessi  pervenimus.     Inibi  Larem 
sedesque  perpetuas  pastores  illi  statuere  decernunt, 
quod  et  longe  a  quaesituris  firmae  latebrae  viderentur 
et    annonae    copiosae    beata    celebritas     invitabat. 
Triduo  denique  iumentorum  refectis  corporibus,  quo 
vendibiliores   videremur,  ad    mercatum    producimur 
magnaque  voce  praeconis  pretia  singulis  nuntiantis 
equi  atque  alii  asini  opulentis   emptoribus  praesti- 
nantur;  at  me  relictum  solum  ac   subsecivum  cum 
fastidio  plerique  praeteribant.     lamque  taedio  con- 
trectationis  eorum,  qui  de  dentibus   meis   aetatem 
computabantj  manum    cuiusdam  faetore  sordentenr, 
qui  gingivas  identidem  meas  putidis  scalpebat  digitis, 
mordicus   arreptam    plenissime  conterui :   quae   res 
circumstantium  ab  emptione  mea  utpote  ferocissimi 
deterruit  animos.     Tune  praeco  diruptis  faucibus  et 
rauca  voce  saucius  in  meas  fortunas  ridiculos  con- 
struebat  iocos:  "Quern  ad  finem  cantherium  istum 
venui    frustra    subiciemus,    et   vetulum   et   extritis 
ungulis  debilem  et  dolore  deformem   et  in  hebeti 
pigritia  ferocem  nee  quicquam  amplius  quam  rude- 
rarium    cribrum  ?      Atque   ideo    vel   donemus    eura 



the  village  there,  who  greatly  sorrowed  for  this 
servant :  then  we,  avoiding  likewise  from  this  dread- 
ful lodging,  incontinently  departed  away,  and  for  a 
whole  day  travelled  through  the  plain  country,  and 
then  we  came  very  tired  to  a  fair  city  very  populous, 
where  our  shepherds  determined  to  make  their  home 
and  continue,  by  reason  that  it  seemed  a  place  where 
they  might  live  unknown,  far  from  such  as  should 
pursue  them,  and  because  it  was  a  country  very 
plentiful  of  corn  and  other  victuals.  There  when  we 
had  remained  the  space  of  three  days,  and  that  I, 
poor  ass,  and  the  other  horses  were  fed  and  kept  in 
the  stable  to  the  intent  we  might  seem  more  saleable, 
we  were  brought  out  at  length  to  the  market,  and 
by  and  by  a  crier  sounded  with  his  horn  to  notify 
that  we  were  to  be  sold.  All  my  companion  horses 
and  the  other  asses  were  bought  up  by  gentlemen, 
but  as  for  me  I  stood  still  forsaken,  for  that  most 
men  passed  me  by  with  despight.  And  when  many 
buyers  came  by  and  handled  me  and  looked  at  my 
teeth  in  my  mouth  to  know  my  age,  I  was  so  weary 
with  opening  my  jaws  that  at  length  (unable  to 
endure  any  longer)  when  one  came  with  a  stinking 
pair  of  hands  and  grated  my  gums  often  with  his 
filthy  fingers,  I  seized  them  and  well  nigh  bit  them 
clean  off,  which  thing  caused  the  standers-by  to  for- 
sake buying  me,  as  being  a  fierce  and  cruel  beast. 
The  crier  when  he  had  gotten  a  hoarse  voice  and 
was  well  nigh  burst  with  crying,  and  saw  that  no 
man  would  buy  me,  began  very  scurrilously  to  mock 
my  evil  fortune,  saying:  "To  what  end  stand  we 
here  to  offer  for  sale  this  vile  ass,  this  old  feeble 
beast,  this  slow  jade  with  worn  hoofs,  made  hideous 
by  his  labours,  idle  save  when  he  is  vicious,  and  good 
for  nothing  but  to  make  sieves  of  his  skin  ?  Why  do 



cuipiam,  si  qui   tamen  faenum  suum    perdere    non 

24  Ad  istum   modum  praeco  ille  cachinnos   circum- 
stantibus     commovebat.        Sed     ilia     fortuna     mea 
saevissima,    quam    per    tot    regiones    iam    fugiens 
eft'ugere  vel  praecedentibus  mails  placare  non  potui, 
rursum  in  me  caecos  detorsit  oculos  et  emptorem 
aptissimum  duris  meis  casibus  mire  repertum  obiecit. 
Scitote    qualem :    cinaedum    et    senem    cinaedum, 
calvum  quidem  sed  cincinnis  semicanis  et  pendulis 
capillatum,  unum  de  triviali  popularium  faece,  qui 
per  plateas  et  oppida  cymbalis  et  crotalis  personantes 
deamque    Syriam    circumferentes    mendicare    com- 
pellunt.      Is    nimio  praestinandi    studio    praeconem 
rogat  cuiatis  essem  :  at  ille  Cappadocum  me  et  satis 
forticulum  denuntiat.     Rursum  requirit  annos  aetatis 
meae  :  sed  praeco  lasciviens  :  "  Mathematicus  quidem 
qui   stellas    eius    disposuit,    quintum    ei  numeravit 
annum ;  sed  ipse  scilicet  melius  istud  de  suis  iiovit 
professionibus.       Quanquam    enim    prudens   crimen 
Corneliae  legis   incurram,  si    civem    Romanum    pro 
servo   tibi   vendidero,   quin    emis    bonum    et   frugi 
mancipium,  quod  te  et  foris  et  domi  poterit  iuvare  ?  " 
Sed  exinde  odiosus  emptor  aliud  de  alio  non  desinit 
quaerere,    denique    de    mansuetudine     etiam    mea 

25  percontatur  anxie.      At  praeco  "Vervecem/'  inquit 
"  Non  asinum  vides  ad   usus  omnes  quietum ;  non 
mordacem,  nee  calcitronem  quidem  sed  prorsus  ut  in 
asini    corio  modestum  hominem    inhabitare  credas. 
Quae  res  cognitu  non  ardua :  nam  si  faciem  tuam 


we  not  give  him  to  somebody,  if  there  be  any  that  it 
shall  irk  not  to  find  him  his  hay  ?  " 

In  this  manner  the  crier  made  all  the  standers-by 
to  laugh  exceedingly;  but  my  evil  fortune,  which 
was  ever  so  cruel  against  me,  whom  I,  by  travel  of 
so  many  countries,  could  in  no  wise  escape  nor 
appease  the  envy  thereof  by  all  the  woes  1  had  under- 
gone, did  more  and  more  cast  its  blind  and  evil  eyes 
upon  me,  with  invention  of  new  means  to  afflict  my 
poor  body,  in  giving  me  another  master  very  fit  for 
my  hard  fate.  Listen  what  man  he  was.  There  was 
an  old  naughty  man,  somewhat  bald,  with  long  and 
grey  hair,  one  of  the  number  of  those  of  the  lewdest 
dregs  of  the  people  which  go  from  door  to  door 
throughout  all  the  villages,  bearing  the  image  of 
the  Syrian  goddess,  and  playing  with  cymbals  and 
bones,  to  get  the  alms  of  good  and  charitable  folks. 
This  old  man  came  hastily  towards  the  crier,  and 
demanded  where  I  was  bred.  '•  Marry,"  quoth  he, 
"  In  Cappadocia :  and  he  is  very  strong."  Then  he 
enquired  what  age  I  was  of,  and  the  crier,  jesting, 
answered:  "A  mathematician,  which  disposed  to  m< 
his  planets,  said  that  he  was  five  years  old;  yet  this  doth 
he  know  best  himself  from  his  own  register  public. 
For  I  would  not  willingly  incur  the  penalty  of  the 
jaw  Cornelia  in  selling  a  free  citizen  for  a  servile 
slave,  yet  if  you  shall  buy  him  you  shall  have  a  good 
and  useful  chattel  both  at  home  and  about  the 
country."  But  this  cursed  buyer  did  never  stint  to 
question  of  my  qualities,  and  at  length  he  demanded 
whether  I  were  gentle  or  no  :  "  Gentle  !  "  quoth  the 
crier,  "  As  gentle  as  a  lamb,  tractable  to  all  use :  he 
will  never  bite,  he  will  never  kick,  but  you  would 
rather  think  that  under  the  shape  of  the  ass  there 
were  some  well-advised  man,  which  verily  you  may 
2  B  385 


mediis  eius  feminibus  iinmiseris,  facile  periclitaberis 
quam  grandem  tibi  demonstret  patientiam." 

Sic  praeco  lurchonem  tractabat  dicacule ;  sed  ille 
cognito  cavillatu,  similis  indignanti  "Atte"  inquit 
"  Cadaver  surdum  et  mutum  delirumque  praeconem, 
omnipotens  et  omniparens  dea  Syria  et  sanctus 
Sabadius  et  Bellona  et  Mater  Idaea,  et  cum  suo 
Adone  Venus  domina  caecum  reddant,  qui  scurrilibus 
iamdudum  contra  me  velitaris  iocis.  An  me  putas, 
inepte,  iumento  fero  posse  deam  committere,  ut 
turbatum  repente  divinum  deiciat  sumulacrum,  ego- 
que  miser  cogar  crinibus  solutis  discurrere  et  deae 
meae  humi  iacenti  aliquem  medicum  quaerere  ? " 
Accepto  tali  sermone  cogitabam  subito  velut  lym- 
phaticus  exsilire,utme  ferocitate  cernens  exasperatum 
emptionem  desineret.  Sed  praevenit  cogitatum  meum 
emptor  anxius  pretio  depenso  statim,  quod  quidem 
gaudens  dominus  scilicet  taedio  mei  facile  suscepit, 
septemdecim  denarium,  et  illico  me  tumicla  spartea 
deligatum  tradidit  Philebo  :  hoc  enim  nomine  cense- 
26  batur  iam  meus  dominus.  At  ille  susceptum  novicium 
famulum  trahebat  ad  domum  statimque  illinc  de 
primo  limine  proclamat :  "  Puellae,  servum  vobis  pul- 
chellum  en  ecce  mercata  perduxi."  Sed  illae  puellae 
chorus  erat  cinaedorum,  quae  statim  exultantes  in 
gaudium,  fracta  et  rauca  et  effeminata  voce  clamores 



easily  conject ;  for  if  you  would  thrust  your  nose  in 
his  tail  you  shall  perceive  how  patient  he  is." 

Thus  the  crier  wittily  mocked  the  old  rascal ;  but 
he,  perceiving  his  taunts  and  jests,  waxed  very  angry, 
saying :  "  Away,  doting  crier,  thou  deaf  and  dumb 
carrion,  I  pray  the  omnipotent  and  omniparent  Syrian 
goddess,  Saint  Sabadius,  Bellona  with  the  Idaean 
mother,  and  Venus  with  her  Adonis  to  strike  out 
both  thine  eyes  that  with  taunting  mocks  hast 
scoffed  me  in  this  sort.  Dost  thou  think  that  I  will 
put  a  goddess  upon  the  back  of  any  fierce  beast, 
whereby  her  divine  image  should  be  thrown  down 
on  the  ground,  and  so  I,  poor  wretch,  should  be 
compelled  (tearing  my  hair)  to  look  for  some  physician 
to  help  her  as  she  lies  fallen  ?  "  When  I  heard  him 
speak  this,  I  thought  with  myself  suddenly  to  leap 
up  like  a  mad  ass,  to  the  intent  he  should  not  buy 
me,  thinking  me  very  fierce  ;  but  incontinently,  like 
an  eager  buyer,  he  prevented  my  thought,  and  would 
lay  down  my  price  for  me,  even  seventeen  pence : 
then  my  master  was  glad,  being  weary  of  me,  and 
receiving  the  money,  delivered  me  by  mine  halter  of 
straw  to  my  new  master,  who  was  called  Philebus. 
He  carried  his  new  servant  home,  and  when  he  came 
to  the  door  of  the  house,  he  culled  out  his  troop, 
saying:  "Behold,  my  daughter's,1  what  a  gentle 
servant  I  have  bought  for  you."  Yet  were  these 
daughters  a  band  of  lewd  and  naughty  fellows,  and 
at  first  they  were  marvellous  glad,  prattling  and 
shouting  for  joy  with  their  broken  and  harsh  voices, 
like  a  troop  of  women,  in  discordant  sounds,  and 

l  The  feminine  is  ironically  used  for  the  effeminate  crew  of 
priests.  So  in  the  Attis  poem  of  Catullus  (LXlii)  the  hero, 
after  his  emasculation,  speaks  of  himself  in  the  femimm- 


absonosintollunt,rati  scilicet  vere  quempiam  hominem 
servulum  ministerio  suo  paratum.  Sed  postquam  non 
oervam  pro  virgine  sed  asinum  pro  homine  succi- 
daneum  videre,  nare  detorta  magistrum  suum  varie 
cavillantur :  non  enim  servum  sed  maritum  ilium 
scilicet  sibi  perduxisse  :  et  "  Heus  "  aiunt  <e  Cave 
ne  solus  exedas  tarn  bellum  scilicet  pullulum,  sed 
nobis  quoque  tuis  palumbulis  nonnunquam  im- 

Haec  et  huiusmodi  mutuo  blaterantes  praesepio 
me  proximum  deligant.  Erat  quidam  iuvenis  satis 
corpulentus,  choraula  doctissimus,  collaticia  stipe  de 
raensa  paratus,  qui  foris  quidem  circumgestantibus 
deam  cornu  canens  adambulabat,  domi  vero  promiscui 
operis  partiarius  agebat  concubinus.  Hie  me  simul 
domi  conspexit  libenter,  appositis  largiter  cibariis, 
gaudens  alloquitur  :  "Venisti  tandem  miserrimi  laboris 
vicarius  :  sed  diu  vivas  et  dominis  placeas  et  meis 
defectis  iam  lateribus  consulas."  Haec  audiens  iam 
27  meas  futuras  novas  cogitabam  aerumnas.  Die  sequenti 
Variis  coloribus  indusiati  et  deformiter  quisque  for- 
raati,  facie  caenoso  pigmento  delita  et  oculis  obunctis 
graphice  prodeunt,  mitellis  et  crocotis  et  carbasinis 
et  bombycinis  iniecti,  quidam  tunicas  albas  in  modum 

thought  verily  that  he  had  brought  home  a  tit  and 
convenient  servant  for  their  purpose.  Hut  when 
they  perceived  that  it  was  not  even  an  hind  l  instead 
of  a  maiden,  but  rather  a  makeshift  ass  for  a  man. 
they  began  to  reprove  him  -with  great  scorn,  saying 
that  he  had  not  brought  a  servant  for  them,  but 
rather  a  stalling  ass  for  himself.  "  Howbeit,"  quoth 
they,  "  Keep  this  pretty  beast  not  wholly  for  your 
own  delight,  but  let  us,  your  darling  doves,  likewise 
have  him  at  commandment." 

Therewithal  babbling  in  this  wise,  they  led  me 
into  the  stable,  and  tied  me  to  the  manger;  and 
there  was  a  certain  stout  young  man  with  a  might v 
body,  well  skilled  in  playing  on  flutes,  whom  they 
had  bought  in  a  market  with  the  money  they  had 
collected;  and  he  walked  before  their  procession, 
playing  the  horn  when  they  carried  round  their 
goddess,  and  at  home  he  shared  in  all  their  labours 
and  they  made  great  use  of  him.  Now  he,  as  soon  as 
he  espied  me,  entertained  me  very  well,  for  he  filled 
my  rack  and  manger  with  meat,  and  spake  merrily, 
saying  :  "  O  master  ass,  you  are  welcome ;  now  you 
shall  take  my  office  in  hand :  you  are  come  to  supply 
my  room,  and  to  ease  me  of  my  miserable  labour  :  1 
pray  Godthou  mayest  long  live  and  please  my  master 
well,  to  the  end  thou  mayest  continually  deliver  my 
weary  sides  from  so  great  pain  and  labour."  N\  lien 
I  heard  his  words,  I  did  prognosticate  my  new  mi-cry 
to  come.  The  day  following  I  saw  them  apparelled 
in  divers  colours,  and  hideously  tricked  out,  havmi;- 
their  faces  ruddled  with  paint,  and  their  eyes  tricked 
out  with  grease,  mitres  on  their  heads,  ve-,tmenl- 
coloured  like  saffron,  surplices  of  silk  and  linen  :  and 
some  ware  white  tunics  printed  with  purple  stripe- 
l  The  usual  reference  to  the  story  of  Iphigenia. 



lanciolarum  quoquoversum  fluente  purpura  depletes 
cingulo  subligati,  pedesluteisinduti  calceis  ;  deamque 
serico  contectam  amiculo  mihi  gerendam  imponunt 
brachiisque  suis  humero  tenus  renudatis,  attollentes 
immanes  gladios  ac  secures,  evantes  exsiliunt  incitante 
tibiae  cantu  lymphaticum  tripudium.  Nee  paucis 
pererratis  casulis  ad  quandam  villam  possessoris  beati 
perveniunt  et  ab  ingressu  primo  statim  absonis 
ululatibus  constrepentes  fanatice  pervolant,  diuque 
capite  demisso  cervices  lubricis  intorquentes  motibus 
crinesque  pendulos  in  circulum  rotantes,  et  nonnun- 
quam  morsibus  suos  incursantes  musculos,  ad  postre- 
mum  ancipiti  ferro  quod  gerebant  sua  quisque 
brachia  dissicant.  Inter  haec  unus  ex  illis 
bacchatur  effusius  ac  de  imis  praecordiis  an- 
helitus  crebros  referens,  velut  numinis  divino  spiritu 
repletus,  simulabat  sauciarn  vecordiam,  prorsus  quasi 
deum  praesentia  soleant  homines  non  sui  fieri  me- 
28  liores  sed  debiles  effici  vel  aegroti.  Specta  denique 
quale  caelesti  providentia  meritum  reportaverit. 
Infit  vaticinatione  clamosa  conficto  mendacio  semet 
ipsum  incessere  atque  criminari,  quasi  contra  fas 
sanctae  religionis  dissignasset  aliquid  et  insuper 
iustas  poenas  noxi  facinoris  ipse  de  se  suis  manibus 
exposcere.  Arrepto  denique  flagro,  quod  semiviris 
illis  proprium  gestamen  est,  contortis  taeniis  lanosi 
velleris  prolixe  fiinbriatum  et  multiiugis  talis 
ovium  tesseratuni,  indidem  sese  multinodis  commulcat 


that  pointed  every  way  like  spears,  girt  with  belts, 
and  on  their  feet  were  yellow  shoes  ;  and  they  attired 
the  goddess  in  silken  robe,  and  put  her  upon  my 
back.  Then  they  went  forth  with  their  arms  nakrd 
to  their  shoulders,  bearing  with  them  great  swords  and 
mighty  axes,  shouting  and  dancing  like  mad  persons 
to  the  sound  of  the  pipe.  After  that  we  had  passed 
many  small  villages,  we  fortuned  to  come  to  a  certain 
rich  man's  house,  where  at  our  first  entry  they  began 
to  howl  all  out  of  tune  and  hurl  themselves  hither 
and  thither,  as  though  they  were  mad.  They  made 
a  thousand  gests  with  their  feet  and  their  heads ; 
they  would  bend  down  their  necks  and  spin  round  so 
that  their  hair  Hew  out  in  a  circle ;  they  would  bite 
their  own  flesh  ;  finally,  every  one  took  his  twy- 
edged  weapon  and  wounded  his  arms  in  divers  places. 
Meanwhile  there  was  one  more  mad  than  the  rest, 
that  fetched  many  deep  sighs  from  the  bottom  of  his 
heart,  as  though  he  had  been  ravished  in  spirit,  or 
replenished  with  divine  power,  and  he  feigned  a 
swoon  and  frenzy,  as  if  (forsooth)  the  presence  of  the 
gods  were  not  wont  to  make  men  better  than  before, 
but  weak  and  sickly.  Mark  then  how  by  divine 
providence  he  found  a  just  and  worthy  recompense 
after  that  he  had  somewhat  returned  to  himself,  he 
invented  and  forged  a  great  lie,  noisily  prophesying 
and  accusing  and  charging  himself,  saying  that  he 
had  displeased  the  divine  majesty  of  the  goddess  by 
doing  of  something  which  was  not  convcn .-il)U:  to  the 
order  of  their  holy  religion,  wherefore  he  prayr.i 
that  vengeance  might  be  done  of  himself.  And 
therewithal  he  took  a  whip,  such  as  is  naturally 
borne  by  these  womanish  men,  with  many  twisted 
knots  and  tassels  of  wool,  and  strung  with  sheep's 
knuckle-bones,  and  with  the  knotted  thongs  scourged 



ictibus,  mire  contra  plagarum  dolores  praesumptione 
munitus.  Cerneres  prosectu  gladiorum  ictuque  fla- 
grorum  solumspurcitia  sanguinis  effeminati  madescere. 
Quae  res  incutiebat  mihi  non  parvam  sollicitudinem 
videnti  tot  vulneribus  largiter  profusum  cruorem,  ne 
quo  casu  deae  peregrinae  stomachus,  ut  quorundam 
hominum  lactem,  sic  ilia  sanguinem  concupisceret 
asiniiiuin.  Sed  ubi  tandem  fatigati,  vel  certe  suo 
laniatu  satiati,  pausam  carnificinae  dedere,  stipes 
aereas,  immo  vero  et  argenteas  multis  certatini 
ofFerentibus,  sinu  recepere  patulo  neciion  et  vini 
cadum  et  lactem  et  caseos  et  farris  et  siliginis  aliquid, 
et  nonnullis  hordeum  deae  gerulo  donantibus.  Avidis 
mimis  corradentes  omniaet  in  sacculoshuic  quaestui 
de  industria  praeparatos  farcientes  dorso  meo  con- 
gerunt,  ut  duplici  scilicet  sarcinae  pondere  gravatus, 
et  horreum  simul  et  templum  incederem. 
29  Ad  istum  modum  palantes  omnern  illam  depraeda- 
bantur  regionem.  Sed  in  quodam  castello  copia 
laetati  largioris  quaesticuli  gaudiales  instruunt  dapes  : 
a  quodam  colono  fictae  vaticinationis  mendacio 
pinguissimum  deposcunt  arietem,  qui  deam  Syriam 
esurientem  suo  satiaret  sacrificio,  probeque  disposita 
cenula  balneas  obeunt  ac  dehinc  lauti  quendam  fortis- 
simum  rusticanum,  industria  laterum  atque  imis 
ventris  bene  praeparatum,  comitem  cenae  secum 
adducunt  paucisque  admodum  praegustatis  olusculis, 
ante  ipsam  mensam  spurcissima  ilia  propudia  ad 
illicitae  libidinis  extrema  flagitia  infandis  uriginibus 
efferantur,  passimque  circumfusi  nudatum  supinatum- 
que  iuvenem  execraudis  oribus  flagitabant.  Nee  diu 


his  own  body  very  strong  to  bear  the  pain  of  the 
blows,  so  that  you  might  see  the  ground  to  be  wet 
and  defiled  with  the  womanish  blood  that  issued  out 
abundantly  with  the  cutting  of  the  swords  and  the 
blows  of  the  scourge  :  which  thing  caused  me  greatly 
to  fear  to  see  such  wounds  and  effusion  of  blood,  lest 
the  same  foreign  goddess  should  likewise  desire  the 
blood  of  an  ass  for  her  stomach,  as  some  men  long  for 
ass's  milk  After  they  at  last  were  weary,  or  at 
least  satisfied  with  rending  themselves,  they  ceased 
from  this  bloody  business  :  and,  behold,  they  received 
from  the  inhabitants,  who  offered  eagerly,  into  their 
open  bosoms  copper  coins,  nay  silver  too,  vessels  of 
wine,  milk,  cheese,  flour  and  wheat ;  and  amongst 
them  there  were  some  that  brought  barley  to  the  ass 
that  carried  the  goddess  :  but  the  greedy  whoresons 
thrust  all  into  their  sacks  which  they  brought  for  the 
purpose,  and  put  them  upon  my  back,  to  the  end  I 
might  serve  for  two  purposes,  that  is  to  say  :  for  the 
barn  by  reason  of  my  corn,  and  for  the  temple  by 
reason  of  the  goddess  that  I  bare. 

In  this  sort  they  went  from  place  to  place  robbing 
all  the  country  over  ;  at  length  they  came  to  a  certain 
town,  purposing  to  make  good  cheer  there,  being 
glad  at  a  great  gain  they  had  gotten,  where,  under 
colour  of  divination,  they  brought  to  pass  that  they 
obtained  a  fat  ram  of  a  poor  husbandman  for  the 
goddess'  supper,  and  to  make  sacrifice  withal.  After 
that  the  banquet  was  richly  prepared,  they  washed 
their  bodies,  and  brought  in  a  lusty  young  man  of 
the  village  to  sup  with  them  ;  and  when  he  had 
scarce  tasted  a  few  herbs  before  the  supper  they 
began  to  discover  their  beastly  customs  and  inordi- 
nate desires.  For  they  compassed  him  round  about 
as  he  sat,  to  abuse  him,  but  when"  mine  eyes  would 



tale  facinus  meis  oculis  tolerantibus  "  Porro  Quirites  " 
proclamare  gestivi,  sed  viduatum  ceteris  syllabis  ac 
litteris  processit"  O"  tantum,  sane  clarum  ac  validum 
et  asino  proprium  sed  inopportune  plane  tempore : 
namque  de  pago  proxumo  complures  iuvenes  abactum 
sibi  noctu  perquirentes  asellum,  nimioque  studio 
cuncta  devorsoria  scrutantes,  intus  aedium  audito 
ruditu  meo,  praedam  absconditam  latibulis  aedium 
ratij  coram  rem  invasuri  suam  improvisi  conferto 
gradu  se  penetrant,  palamque  illos  execrandas 
foeditates  obeuntes  deprehendunt :  iam  iamque 
vicinos  undique  percientes  turpissirnam  scaenam 
patefaciunt,  insuper  ridicule  sacerdotum  purissimam 
laudantes  castimoniam. 

30  Hac  infamia  consternati,  quae  per  ora  populi  facile 
dilapsa  merito  invisos  ac  detestabiles  eos  cunctis 
effecerat,  noctem  ferme  circa  mediam  collectis  omni- 
bus furtim  castello  facessunt,  bonaque  itineris  parte 
ante  iubaris  exortum  transacta,  iam  die  claro  solitu- 
dines  avias  nacti,  multa  secum  prius  collocuti  accin- 
gunt  se  meo  funeri ;  deaque  vehiculo  meo  sublata  et 
humi  reposita  cunctis  stramentis  me  renudatum  ac  de 
quadam  quercu  destinatum  flagro  illo  pecuinis  ossibus 
catenate  verberantes  paene  ad  extremam  confecerant 
mortem.  Fuit  unus  qui  poplites  meos  enervare  secure 
sua  comminaretur,  quod  de  pudore  illo  candido  scili- 
cet suo  tarn  deformiter  triumphassem  :  sed  ceteri  non 
meae  salutis  sed  simulacri  iacentis  contemplatione  in 
vita  me  retinendum  censuere.  Rursum  itaque  me 


not  long  bear  to  behold  this  horrible  fact,  I  could  not 
but  attempt  to  utter  myinind  and  say,  "O  masters," 
but  I  could  pronounce  no  more  but  the  first  letter  "O," 
which  I  roared  out  very  clearly  and  valiantly  and  like 
an  ass;  but  at  a  time  inopportune,  for  some  youin: 
men  of  the  town,  seeking  for  a  stray  ass  that  thev 
had  lost  the  same  night,  and  searching  diligently  all 
the  inns,  heard  my  voice  within  the  house ;  whereby 
they  judged  that  I  had  been  theirs,  but  concealed  in 
a  hidden  place,  and  resolving  to  manage  their  own 
business,  they  entered  altogether  unawares,  and  found 
these  persons  committing  their  vile  abomination. 
This  when  they  saw  they  called  all  the  neighbour- 
ing inhabitants  and  declared  to  them  their  unnatural 
villainy,  mocking  and  laughing  at  this  the  pure  and 
clean  chastity  of  these  priests.  "  Then  they,  ashamed 
at  the  report  which  was  dispersed  throughout  all  the 
/egion  there  of  their  beastly  wickedness,  so  that  they 
were  justly  hated  and  despised  of  all,  about  midnight 
brought  together  all  their  trumpery  and  departed 
away  from  the  town.  When  we  had  passed  a  good 
part  of  our  journey  before  the  rising  of  the  sun,  and 
were  now  come  into  a  wide  desert  in  the  broad  day, 
they  conspired  much  together  to  slay  me.  For  after 
they  had  taken  the  goddess  from  my  back  and  set 
her  gingerly  upon  the  ground,  they  likewise  took  off 
all  my  harness  and  bound  me  surely  to  an  oak,  and 
then  beat  me  with  that  whip  which  was  knotted  with 
sheep's  bones,  in  such  sort  that  they  had  well  nigh 
killed  me.  Amongst  them  there  was  one  that 
threatened  to  cut  my  hamstrings  with  his  hatchet, 
because  by  my  noise  I  had  so  famously  hurt  his  pure 
chastity  ;  but  the  others,  regarding  more  the  image 
that  lay  upon  the  ground  than  my  sat.  ty,  thought 
best  to  spare  my  life;  and  so  they  laded  me  again, 



refertum  sarcinis  planis  gladiis  minantes  perveniunt 
ad  quandam  nobilem  civitatem.  Inibi  vir  principalis 
et  alias  religiosus  et  eximie  deam  reverens,  tinnitu 
cjmbalorum  et  sonu  tympanorum  cantusque  Phrygii 
mulcentibus  modulis  excitus,  procurrit  obviam,  deam- 
que  votivo  suscipiens  hospitio  nos  omnes  intra  con- 
saeptum  domus  amplissimae  constituit,  numenque 
summa  veneratione  atque  hostiis  opimis  placare  con- 

31  Hie  ego  me  potissimum  capitis  periclitatum  rne- 
mini.  Nam  quidam  colonus  pattern  venationis,  im- 
manis  cervi  pinguissimum  femus,  domino  illi  suo 
muneri  misei'at,  quod  incuriose  pone  culinae  fores 
non  altiuscule  suspensum  canis  adaeque  venaticus 
latenter  invaserat,  laetusque  praeda  propere  custo- 
dientes  oculos  evaserat.  Quo  damno  cognito  suaque 
reprehensa  neglegentia  cocus  diu  lamentatus  lacrimis 
inefficacibus,  iam  iamque  domino  cenam  flagitante 
maerens  et  utcunque  metuens  altius,  filio  suo  par- 
vulo  consalutato  arreptoque  funiculo,  mortem  sibi 
nexu  laquei  comparabat.  Nee  tamen  latuit  fidam 
uxorem  eius  casus  extremus  mariti,  sed  funestum  no- 
dum  violenter  invadens  manibus  ambabus  "  Adeone  " 
inquit  "  Praesenti  malo  perterritus  mente  excidisti 
tua,  nee  fortuitum  istud  remedium,  quod  deum  pro- 
videntia  subministrat,  intueris?  Nam  si  quid  in 
ultimo  fortunae  turbine  resipiscis,  expergite  mi  aus- 
culta  et  advenam  istum  asinum  remote  quodam  loco 
deductum  iugula,  femusque  eius  ad  similitudinem 

driving  me  before  them  with  their  naked  swords 
they  came  to  a  noble  city.  There  the  principal 
patron,  who  was  in  every  way  a  man  very  religious 
and  especially  bearing  high  reverence  unto  the' 
goddess,  came  in  great  devotion  to  meet  us  when 
he  heard  our  tinkling  cymbals  and  tapping  drums 
and  the  soft  strain  of  the  Phrygian  music,  and  re- 
ceived her  and  all  our  company  as  a  pious  host  into 
his  great  house,  and  he  hastened  with  much  sacrifice 
and  veneration  to  appease  her  godhead. 

But  there,  I  remember,  I  thought  myself  in  most 
danger  of  all  my  life  ;  for  there  was  one  that  brought 
venison  to  the  master  of  the  house,  a  side  of  a  fat 
buck,  for  a  present ;  which  being  hanged  carelessly 
behind  the  kitchen  door,  not  far  from  the  ground, 
was  clean  eaten  up  by  a  hunting  greyhound  that 
came  in,  who,  joyful  to  have  gotten  his  prey,  escaped 
the  eyes  of  them  that  watched.  The  cook,  when  he 
saw  the  venison  devoured,  reproving  his  own  negli- 
gence, lamented  and  wept  to  no  purpose,  and  because 
supper-time  approached  nigh,  when  his  master  should 
now  call  for  the  meat,  he  sorrowed  and  feared  greatly  ; 
and  bidding  farewell  to  his  little  child,  he  took  a 
halter  to  hang  himself;  but  his  good  wife,  perceiving 
whereabout  he  went,  ran  incontinently  to  him,  and 
taking  the  deadly  halter  in  both  her  hands  stopped 
him  of  his  purpose,  saying :  "  O  husband,  are  you 
out  of  your  wits  with  this  present  trouble  ?  What 
intend  you  to  do  ?  See  you  not  a  chance  remedy 
before  your  eyes  ministered  unto  you  by  divine 
providence  ?  I  pray  you,  husband,  if  you  have  any 
sense  left  in  this  storm  of  fortune,  listen  attentively 
to  my  counsel  :  carry  this  strange  ass  out  into  some 
secret  place  and  kill  him  ;  which  done,  cut  off  one  of 
his  sides,  and  sauce  it  well  like  the  side  of  the  buck, 



perditi  detraction  et  accuratius  in  protrimentis  sapi- 
dissime  percoctum  appone  domino  cervini  vicem." 
Nequissimo  verberoni  sua  placuit  salus  de  mea  morte, 
et  multum  conservae  laudata  sagacitate  destinatae 
iara  lanienae  cultros  acuebat. 


and  set  it  before  your  master  in  place  thereof."  Then 
the  naughty  rascal,  the  cook,  was  well  pleased  to  slay 
me,  to  save  himself,  and  praised  greatly  the  shrewd 
counsel  of  his  wife  ;  and  to  bring  his  purpose  to  pass, 
he  went  to  the  whetstone  to  sharp  his  tools  accord- 
ingly for  the  butchery  he  had  promised. 



1  Sic  ille  nequissimus  carnifex  contra  me  mantis  Smpias 
obarmabat,  at  ego,  praecipitante  consilium  periculi 
tanti  praesentia  nee  expectata  diutina  cogitatione, 
lanienam  immiiientem  fuga  vitare  statui ;  protinus- 
que  vinculo,  quo  fueram  deligatus,  abrupto,  cursu 
me  proripio  totis  pedibus,  ad  tutelam  salutis  crebris 
calcibus  velitatus ;  illicoque  me,  raptim  transcursa 
proxima  porticu,  triclinio,  in  quo  dominus  aedium 
sacrificales  epulas  cum  sacerdotibus  deae  cenitabat, 
incunctanter  immitto  nee  pauca  rerum  apparatus 
cibarii,  mensas  etiam x  impetu  meo  collido  atque 
disturbo.  Qua  rerum  deformi  strage  paterfamilias 
commotus,  ut  importunum  atque  lascivum  me  cui- 
dam  famulo  curiose  traditum  certo  aliquo  loco  clau- 
sum  iubet  cohiberi,  ne  rursum  convivium  placidum 
simili  petulantia  dissiparem.  Hoc  astutulo  commento 
scitule  munitus  et  mediis  lanii  manibus  ereptus  cus- 
todela  salutaris  mihi  gaudebam  carcerisr 

Sed  nimirum  nihil  Fortuna  renuente  licet  homini 
nato  dexterum  pro  venire,  nee  consilio  prudent!  vel 
remedio  sagaci  divinae  providentiae  fatalis  dispositio 
subvert!  vel  reformari  potest.  Mihi  denique  id  ip- 
sum  commentum,  quod  momentariam  salutem  rep- 
perisse  videbatur,  periculum  grande,  immo  praesens 

l  In  the  best  MSS  after  the  word  etiam  a  word  which  looks 
like  gen  has  been  erased.  It  has  been  suggested  by  Helm 
that  geniales,  "cheerful,"  should  be  supplied. 



IN  this  manner  the  traitorous  cook  prepared  himself 
to  slay  me :  and  when  he  was  ready  with  his  knives 
to  do  his  feat,  I  devised  with  myself  how  I  might 
escape  the  present  peril,  and  I  did  not  long  delay, 
for  incontinently  I  brake  the  halter  wherewith  1  was 
tied,  I  dashed  forth  at  full  speed,  and  flinging  my 
heels  hither  and  thither,  at  length  to  save  myself  1 
ran  hastily  through  a  passage  that  was  near,  burst 
into  a  parlour  where  the  master  of  the  house  was 
feasting  after  the  sacrifice  with  the  priests,  and 
disquieted  all  the  company,  throwing  down  their 
meats  and  drinks  and  even  the  table  itself.  The 
master  of  the  house,  dismayed  at  my  great  disorder, 
strictly  commanded  one  of  his  servants  to  take  me 
up  as  a  savage  and  wanton  ass,  and  lock  me  in  some 
strong  place  to  the  end  I  might  disturb  them  no 
more  ;  but  I  regarded  my  imprisonment  as  my 
safety,  considering  that  by  my  clever  colouring  and 
deceit  I  was  happily  delivered  from  the  hands  of 
the  traitorous  cook. 

Howbeit,  if  fortune  be  opposite,  nothing  may 
prosper  a  man,  nor  may  the  fatal  disposition  of  the 
divine  providence  be  avoided  or  changed  by  wise 
counsel,  nor  by  any  wholesome  remedy:  for  that  very 
deceit,  whidh  seemed  to  have  found  for  me  safety 
for  the  moment,  brought  upon  me  a  grievous  danger, 
nay  well  nigh  utter  destruction :  for  by  and  by,  as 
2c  401 


exitium  conflavit  aliud.  Nam  quidam  subito  puer 
mobili  ac  trepida  facie  percitus,  ut  familiares  inter 
se  susurrabant,  irrumpit  triclinium  suoque  annuntiat 
domino  de  proxumo  angiportu  canemrabidam  paulo 
ante  per  posticam  impetu  miro  sese  direxisse  ardenti- 
que  prorsus  furore  venaticos  canes  invasisse,  ac 
dehinc  proxumum  petisse  stabulum  atque  ibi  plera- 
que  iumenta  incurrisse  pari  saevitia,  jnec  postremum 
saltern  ipsis  homimbus  pepercisse :  nam  Myrtilum 
mulioneui  et  Hephaestionem  cocum  et  Hypatarium 
cubicularium  et  Apollonium  medicum,  immo  vero 
et  plures  alios  ex  familia  abigere  temptantes  variis 
niorsibus  quemque  lacerasse,  certe  venenatis  mor- 
sibus  contacta  nomiulla  iumeuta  efi'erari  simili  rabie. 
Quae  res  omnium  statini  percussit  animos,  ratique  me 
etiam  eadem  peste  infectum  ferocire,  arreptis  cuiusce- 
modi  telis  mutuoque  ut  exitium  commune  protelarent 
cohortati,  ipsi  potius  eodem  vesaniae  morbo  labor- 
antes  persequuntur.  Nee  dubio  me  lanceis  illis  vel 
venabulis,  immo  vero  et  bipennibus,  quae  facile 
famuli  subministraverant,  membratim  compilassent, 
ni  respecto  subiti  periculi  turbine  cubiculum,  in  quo 
mei  domini  devertebant,  protinus  irrupissem.  Tune 
clausis  obseratisque  super  me  foribus  obsidebant 
locum,  quoad  sine  ullo  congressionis  suae  periculo 
pestilentiae  letalis  pervicaci  rabie  possessus  ac  pere- 
sus  absumerer  :  quo  facto  tandem  libertatem  nanctus, 
solitariae  fortunae  munusamplexus,  super  constratuui 


3  t 


they  were  familiarly  whispering  together,  a  lad  came 
running  into  the  parlour,  all  trembling  and  fearful  in 
his  countenance,  and  declared  to  the  master  of  the 
house  that  a  mad  dog  had  run  in  from  the  next  lane 
and  had  rushed  furiously  into  the  back  gate ;  which 
had  done  much  harm,  for  he  had  bitten  many  grey- 
hounds and  thence  had  entered  the  stable  and  had 
with  like  savagery  attacked  most  of  the  beasts ;  nor 
finally  had  he  spared  men,  for  there  was  one  Myrtilus 
a  muleteer,  Hephaestion  a  cook,  Hypatarius  a  cham- 
berlain, and  Apollonius  a  physician,  nay  many  more, 
who  (thinking  to  chase  away  the  mad  dog)  were 
cruelly  bitten  by  him  ;  and,  indeed,  many  horses  and 
other  beasts  had  been  infected  with  the  venom  of 
his  poisonous  teeth  and  become  mad  likewise.  This 
thing  caused  them  all  at  the  table  greatly  to  fear, 
and  thinking  that  I  had  been  made  mad  by  being 
bitten  and  was  mad  in  like  sort,  they  snatched  up  all 
manner  of  weapons  and  came  out  exhorting  one 
another  so  to  keep  off  the  common  destruction  of 
all,  themselves  rather  a  prey  to  the  same  disease  of 
madness.  Verily,  with  their  spears,  clubs,  and  pitch- 
forks, which  their  servants  easily  found  for  them, 
they  had  torn  me  limb  from  limb,  had  I  not  by  and 
by  observed  the  storm  of  sudden  danger  and  crept 
into  a  chamber,  where  my  masters  intended  to  lodge 
that  night.  Then  they  closed  and  locked  fast  the 
doors  about  me,  and  kept  the  chamber  round,  till 
such  time  as  they  thought  that  they  would  not 
have  to  meet  me  in  battle  and  the  pestilent 
rage  of  madness  should  have  killed  me.  Now 
when  I  was  thus  shut  in  the  chamber,  I  had  at 
last  gained  my  liberty,  and  taking  the  gift  that 
fortune  had  sent  me,  to  be  alone,  I  laid  me 
down  upon  the  bed  to  sleep,  considering  it  was 



lectum  abiectus  post  multum  equidem  temporis  som- 
num  humanum  quievi. 

3  lamque  clara  die,  mollitie  cubiculi  refota  lassi- 
tudine,  vegetus  exsurgo  atque  illos,  qui  meae  tutelae 
pervigiles  excubias  agitaverant,  ausculto  de  meis  sic 
altercare  fortunis  :  "  Adhuccine  miserum  istum  asi- 
num  iugi  furore  iactari  credimus  ?  Immo  vero  iam 
virus  increscente  saevitia  prorsus  extinctum."  Sic 
opinionis  variae  terminum  ad  explorationem  con- 
ferunt  ac  de  rima  quadam  prospiciunt  sanum  me 
atque  sobrium  otiose  consistere :  iamque  ultro  fori- 
bus  patefactis  plenius  an  iam  sim  mansuefactus  peri- 
clitantur.  Sed  unus  ex  his,  de  caelo  scilicet  missus 
mihi  sospitator,  argumentum  explorandae  sani- 
tatis  meae  tale  commonstrat  ceteris,  ut  aquae  re- 
centis  completam  pelvem  offerrent  potui  meo,  ac 
si  intrepidus  et  more  solito  sumens  aquis  allibe- 
scerem,  sanum  me  atque  omni  morbo  scirent  expedi- 
tum  :  contra  vero  si  visum  contactumque  laticis  vita- 
rem  ac  perh  orrescerem,  pro  comperto  noxiam  rabiem 
4  pertinaciter  durare :  hoc  enim  libris  etiam  pristinis 
proditum  observari  solere.  Isto  placito  vas  immane 
confestim  aquae  pellucidae  de  proxumo  petitae  fonte 
cunctantes  adhuc  offerunt  mihi :  at  ego  sine  ulla 
mora  progressus  etiam  obvio  gradu  satis  sitienter  pro-  totum  caput  inferens  salutares  vere  equidem 
illas  aquas  hauriebam.  lamque  et  plausus  manuum  et 
aurium  flexus  et  ductum  capistri  et  quidvis  aliud  peri- 


long  time  past  since  1  lay  and  took  my  rest  as  a 
man  doth. 

When  morning  was  come,  and  that  I  was  well 
reposed  by  the  softness  of  the  bed,  I  rose  up  lustily. 
In  the  mean  season  I  heard  them  which  watched 
about  the  chamber  all  night  reason  with  themselves 
in  this  sort :  "  Verily,"  quoth  one,  "  I  think  the  ass 
be  still  raving."  "So  think  not,"  quoth  another, 
"  For  the  outrageous  poison  of  madness  hath  killed 
him."  But  being  thus  in  divers  opinions,  they 
determined  to  put  them  to  the  test  and  looked 
through  a  crevice,  and  espied  me  standing  still,  sober 
and  quiet,  in  the  middle  of  the  chamber ;  and  then 
they  opened  the  doors  and  came  towards  me  to  prove 
whether  I  were  gentle  or  no.  Amongst  whom  there 
was  one,  which  in  my  opinion  was  sent  from  heaven 
to  save  my  life,  that  put  forward  a  proof  to  see 
whether  I  were  sane :  and  he  willed  the  others  to 
set  a  basin  of  fair  water  before  me,  and  thereby  they 
should  know  whether  I  were  mad  or  no,  for  if  I  did 
drink  without  fear,  as  I  accustomed  to  do,  it  was  a 
sign  that  I  was  whole  and  free  of  all  disease,  where 
contrary  if  1  did  fly  and  abhor  the  sight  and  taste  of 
the  water,  it  was  an  evident  proof  of  my  continued 
madness ;  which  thing  he  said  that  he  had  read  in 
ancient  and  credible  books.  Whereupon  they  agreed 
thereto  and  took  a  basin  of  clear  water  from  a  spring- 
hard  by  and  presented  it  before  me,  hesitating  and 
delaying  still;  but  I,  as  soon  as  I  perceived  the 
wholesome  water  of  my  salvation,  ran  incontinently 
and,  thrusting  my  head  into  the  basin,  drank  all  th;it 
water,  that  was  truly  water  of  salvation  to  me,  as 
though  I  had  been  greatly  athirst.  Then  did 
suffer  them  to  stroke  me  with  their  hands,  and  to 
bow  my  ears,  and  to  take  me  by  the  halter  and  aught 



clitantium  placide  patiebar,  quoad  contra  vesanam 
eorum  praesumptionem  modestiam  meam  liquido 
cunctis  approbarem.  Ad  istum  modum  vitato  duplici 
periculo,  die  sequenti  rursum  divinis  exuviis  onustus 
cum  crotalis  et  cymbalis  circumforaneum  mendica- 
bulum  producor  ad  viam.  Nee  paucis  casulis  atque 
castellis  oberratis  devertimus  ad  quempiam  pagum 
urbis  opulentae  quondam,  ut  memorabant  incolae, 
inter  semiruta  vestigia  conditum,  et  hospitio  proxumi 
stabuli  recepti  cognoscimus  lepidam  de  adulterio 
cuiusdam  pauperis  fabulam,  quam  vos  etiam  cogno- 
scatis  volo. 

5  Is  gracili  pauperie  laborans  fabriles  operas  prae- 
bendo  par  vis  illis  mercedibus  vitam  tenebat.  Erat  ei 
tamen  uxorcula  etiam,  satis  quidem  tenuis  et  ipsa, 
verum  tamen  postrema  lascivia  famigerabilis.  Sed 
die  quadam  dum  matutino  ille  ad  opus  susceptum 
proficiscitur,  statim  latenter  irrepit  eius  hospitium 
temerarius  adulter :  ac  dum  Veneris  colluctationibus 
securius  operantur,  maritus  ignarus  rerum  ac  nihil 
etiam  turn  tale  suspicans  improvisus  hospitium  repetit. 
lamque  clausis  et  obseratis  foribus  uxoris  laudata 
continentia  ianuam  pulsat,  sibilo  etiam  praesentiam 
suam  denuntiante  :  tune  mulier  callida  et  ad  huius- 

l  Vesana  praesumptio   has   a   double   meaning  which  it  is 
not  easy  to  render  into  English.     Lucius  had  stated  above 



else  that  they  dared,  so  that  I  might,  by  taking  each 
thing  in  good  part,  disprove  their  mad  presumption  l 
by  my  meekness  and  gentle  behaviour.  When  I  was 
thus  delivered  from  this  double  danger,  the  next  day 
I  was  laded  again  with  the  trappings  of  the  goddess 
and  other  trumpery,  and  was  brought  out  into  the 
way  with  rattles  and  cymbals,  to  beg  in  the  villages 
which  we  passed  by  according  to  our  custom.  And 
after  that  we  had  gone  through  a  few  hamlets  and 
castles,  we  fortuned  to  come  to  a  certain  village, 
which  was  builded  (as  the  inhabitants  there  affirmed) 
among  the  ruined  foundations  of  a  famous  and 
ancient  city.  And  after  that  we  had  turned  into  the 
next  inn,  we  heard  of  a  pretty  jest  committed  in  the 
town  there,  in  the  matter  of  the  cuckoldry  of  a 
certain  poor  man,  which  I  would  that  you  should 
know  likewise. 

There  was  a  man  dwelling  in  the  town,  very  poor, 
that  had  naught  to  live  upon  but  that  which  he  got 
by  his  labour  as  a  smith  and  the  travail  of  his  hands  : 
his  wife  too  was  very  poor,  but  known  to  be  lascivious 
and  exceeding  given  to  the  desire  of  the  flesh.  Now 
it  fortuned  on  a  day  that  while  this  man  was  gone 
betimes  in  the  morning  about  his  business,  according 
as  he  accustomed  to  do,  his  wife's  lover  secretly  came 
into  his  house  to  have  his  pleasure  with  her.  And 
so  it  chanced  that  during  the  time  that  he  and  she 
were  busking  together,  her  husband,  suspecting  no 
such  matter,  returned  suddenly  home  praising  the 
chaste  continency  of  his  wife,in  that  he  found  hisdoors 
fast  locked  and  closed  ;  wherefore,  as  his  custom  was, 
he  whistled  to  declare  his  coming  home.  Thru  his 

(ch.  2)  that  his  pursuers  were  so  much  excited  that  they 
seemed  mad  themselves,  but  it  also  has  the  idea  of  '•  their 
presumption  of  my  madness." 



modi  flagitia  perastutula  tenacissimis  amplexibus 
expeditum  hominem  dolio,  quod  erat  in  angulo 
sevniobrutum  sed  alias  vacuum,  dissimulanter  abscon- 
dit,  et  patefactis  aedibus  adhuc  introeuntem  maritum 
aspero  sermone  accipit :  "  Siccine  vacuus  et  otiosus 
iusinuatis  manibusambulabis  mihi  nee  obito  consueto 
labore  vitae  iiostrae  prospicies  et  aliquid  cibatui 
parabis  ?  At  ego  misera  pernox  et  per  diem  lanificio 
nervos  meos  contorqueo,  ut  intra  cellulam  nostram 
saltern  lucernu  luceat.  Quanto  me  felicior  Daphne 
yicina,  quae  mero  et  prandio  matutino  saucia  cum 
6  suis  adulteris  volutatur  !  "  Sic  confutatus  maritus 
"  Et  quid  istic  est  ?  "  ait  "  Nam  licet  forensi  negotio 
officinator  noster  attentus  ferias  nobis  fecerit,  tamen 
hodiernae  cenulae  nostrae  prospexi.  Vides  istud 
dolium,  quod  semper  vacuum  frustra  locum  detinet 
tantum  et  revera  praeter  impedimentum  conversa- 
tionis  nostrae  nihil  praestat  amplius  ?  Istud  ego 
quinque  denariis  cuidam  venditavi ;  et  adest,  ut  dato 
pretio  secum  rem  suam  ferat.  Quin  itaque  prae- 
cingeris  mihique  manum  tantisper  accommodas,  ut 
exobrutum  protinus  tradatur  emptori."  E  re  nata 
fallacia,  mulier  temerarium  tollens  cachinnum 
"Magnum"  inquit  "  Istum  virum  ac  strenuum 
negotiatorem  nacta  sum,  qui  rem,  quam  ego  mulier 
et  intra  hospitium  contenta  iamdudum  septem 
denariis  vendidi,  minoris  distraxit."  Additamentb 
pretii  laetus  maritus  "  Et  quis  est  ille,"  ait  "  Qui 
tanto  praestinavit  ?  "  At  ilia  "  Olim,  inepte,"  inquit 



crafty  wife,  ready  with  present  shifts,  loosed  her  lover 
from  her  embrace  and  hid  him  in  a  great  tub  standing 
in  a  corner,  and  it  was  very  ruinous  and  dirty,  but 
empty  withal ;  and  then  she  opened  the  door,  blaming 
her  husband  in  this  sort :  "  Comest  thou  home  so  every 
day  empty  with  thy  hands  wrapt  in  thy  cloke  ? 
And  bringest  nothing  by  thy  accustomed  labour  to 
maintain  our  house  ?  Thou  hast  no  regard  for  our 
profit,  neither  providest  for  any  meat  or  drink, 
whereas  I,  poor  wretch,  do  nothing  day  and  night  but 
wear  my  sinews  with  spinning,  and  yet  my  travail 
will  scarce  find  the  candles  to  lighten  our  hut.  O 
how  much  more  happy  is  my  neighbour  Daphne,  that 
eateth  and  drinketh  at  her  pleasure,  and  well  foxed 
passeth  the  time  with  her  amorous  lovers  according 
to  her  desire."  "What  is  the  matter?"  quoth  her 
husband,  much  grieved  at  that  she  said,  "  Though  our 
master  hath  business  in  the  market  and  hath  made 
holiday  for  us,  yet  think  not  but  that  I  have  made 
provision  for  our  supper  this  day ;  dost  thou  not  see 
this  tub  that  keepeth  a  place  here  in  our  house  in 
vain,  and  doth  us  no  service  save  to  hinder  us  in  our 
coming  and  going  ?  Behold  I  have  sold  it  to  a  good 
fellow  (that  now  cometh)  for  five  pence,  and  he  will 
pay  the  money  and  carry  it  away.  Wherefore  I 
pray  thee  lend  me  thy  hand  that  I  may  mend  it 
and  take  it  up  and  deliver  him  the  tub."  His  wife 
(having  invented  a  present  shift)  laughed  boldly  on 
her  husband,  saying  :  "  What  a  notable  and  goodly 
merchant  have  I  gotten  in  you,  to  fetch  away  my 
tub  for  so  little  for  which  I,  poor  woman  that 
sit  all  day  alone  in  my  house,  have  been  proffered 
long  ago  seven  pence  !  "  Her  husband,  being  well 
pleased  at  the  greater  price,  demanded  what  he  was 
that  would  give  so  much.  "Look,  fool,"  quoth 



"  Descendit  in  dolium  sedulo  soliditatem  eius  pro- 

7  Nee  ille  sermoni  mulieris  defuit  sed  exsurgens  ala- 
criter  "Vis"    inquit  "  Verum   scire,  materfamilias  ? 
Hoc  tibi  dolium  nimis  vetustum  est  et  multifariam 
rimis  hiantibus  quassum  "  ;  ad  maritumque  eius  dis- 
simulaiiter    conversus     "  Quin     tu,    quicunque     es 
homuncio,  lucernam"    ait  "  Actutum  mihi  expedis, 
ut  erasis  intrinsecus  sordibus  diligenter   an  aptum 
usui   possim  dinoscere,  nisi  nos  putas  aes   de  malo 
habere  ?  "       Xec    quicquam   moratus   ac   suspicatus 
acer  et  egregius  ille  maritus,  accensa  lucerna, "  Dis- 
cede,"  inquit  "  Frater,  et  otiosus  assiste,  donee  probe 
procuratum  istud  tibi  repraesentem/'  et  cum  dicto 
nudatus    ipse,    delate     lumine,     scabiem    vetustam 
cariosae  testae  occipit  exculpere.     At  vero  adultetj 
bellissimus  ille  pusio,  inclinatam  dolio  pronam  uxorem 
fabri   superincurvatus    secure    dedolabat.       Ast    ilia 
capite     in     dolium    demisso    maritum     suum    astu 
meretricio  tractabat  ludicre  :  hoc  et  illud  et  aliud  et 
rursus  aliud  purgandum  demonstrat  digito  suo,  donee 
utroque    opere    perfecto,  acceptis   septem  denariis, 
calaniitosus  faber  collo  suo  gerens  dolium  coactus  est 
ad  hospitium  adulteri  perferre. 

8  Pauculis    ibi    diebus    commorati    et   munificentia 
publica  saginati  vaticinationisque  crebris  mercedibus 
suffareinati  purissimi  illi  sacerdotes  novum  quaestus 
genus  sibi  comminiscuntur.    Sorte  unica  pro  casibus  l 

i  Casibus  is  the  emendation  of  the  Dutch  editors  Oolvius 
and  Oudendorp  for  the  MSS'  meaningless  casulis. 



she,  f<  He  is  gone  under  to  see  where  it  be  sound 
or  no." 

Then  her  lover,  which  was  under  the  tub,  began  to 
stir  that  his  words  might  agree  to  the  words  of  the 
woman,  and  said  :  "  Dame,  will  you  have  me  tell  the 
truth  ?  This  tub  is  old  and  rotten  and  cracked  as 
meseemeth  on  every  side."  And  then  he  turned 
himself  to  her  husband,  colouring  the  matter  and 
saying  :  "  I  pray,  honest  man,  whoever  you  be,  light 
a  candle  that  I  may  make  the  tub  clean  within,  to 
see  if  it  be  for  my  purpose  or  no,  for  I  do  not  mind 
to  cast  away  my  money  wilfully."  This  clever 
husband  by  and  by,  suspecting  nothing,  delayed  not 
to  light  a  candle,  saying :  "  I  pray  you,  good  brother, 
put  not  yourself  to  so  much  pain,  but  stand  by  and 
let  me  make  the  tub  clean  and  ready  for  you " ; 
whereupon  he  put  off  his  coat  and  took  the  light  and 
crept  under  the  tub  to  rub  away  the  old  filth  from 
the  sides.  In  the  mean  season  the  minion  lover  cast 
his  wife  on  the  bottom  of  the  tub,  and  had  his 
pleasure  with  her  over  his  head,  and  she,  like  the 
very  harlot  that  she  was,  played  a  merry  prank  upon 
her  husband ;  for  as  she  was  in  the  midst  of  her 
pastime,  she  turned  her  head  on  this  side  and  that 
side,  shewing  now  this  and  now  that  to  be  cleansed, 
till  as  they  had  both  ended  their  business,  and  then 
he  delivered  seven  pence  for  the  tub  :  and  then  the 
poor  smith  must  himself  carry  it  on  his  back  to  the 
lover's  lodging. 

After  that  we  had  tarried  there  a  few  days  at  the 
cost  and  charges  of  the  whole  village,  and  had  gotten 
much  money  by  our  divination  and  prognostication 
of  things  to  come,  those  good  priests  invented  a  new 
mean  to  pick  men's  purses ;  for  they  had  one  lot 
whereon  was  written  this  cheating  answer,  which 



pluribus  enotata  consulentes  de  rebus  variis  plurimos 
ad  hunc  modum  cavillantur.  Sors  haec  erat : 

Ideo  coniuncti  terram  prescind unt  boves, 
ut  in  futurum  laeta  germinent  sata. 

Turn  si  qui  matrimonium  forte  coaptantes  inter- 
rogarent,  rem  ipsam  responderi  aiebant,  iungendos 
connubio  et  satis  liberum  procreandis.  Si  possessiones 
praestinaturus  quaereret,  merito  boves  ut  et  iugum 
et  arva  sementis  florentia  pronuntiari.  Si  qui  de 
profectione  sollicitus  divinum  caperet  auspicium, 
iunctos  iani  paratosque  quadripedum  cunctorum 
mansuetissimos  etlucrum  promitti  de  glebae  germine. 
Si  proelium  capessiturus  vel  latronum  factionem 
persecuturus  utiles  necne  process  us  sciscitaretur, 
addictam  victoriam  forti  praesagio  contendebant, 
quippe  cervices  hostium  iugo  subactum  iri  et 
praedam  de  rapinis  uberrimam  fructuosamque  captum 

Ad  istum  modum  divinationis  astu  captioso  cor- 

9  raserant  non  parvas  pecunias,  sed  assiduis  interroga- 

tionibus  argumenti  satietate  iam  defecti,  rursum  ad 

viam   prodeunt,  via  tota   quam  nocte  confeceramus 

longe  peiorem.    Quidni  ?     Lacunosis  incilibus  voragi- 

1  Adlington  has  here  a  marginal  note,  "  So  used  feigned 
Egyptians  of  late  years  in  England,"  and  the  practice  of  the 
trade  has  not  varied  since  his  time.  Adlingtoij  did  not 


they  gave  for  every  enquiry  ;  and  it  was  :  «  The  oxen 
tied  and  yoked  together  :  do  plough  the  ground  to  the 
intent  it  may  bring  forth  her  increase."  1  And  by  these 
kind  of  lots  they  deceived  many  of  the  simple  sort : 
for  if  one  had  demanded  whether  he  should  have  a 
good  wife  or  no,  they  would  say  that  his  lot  did 
testify  the  same,  that  he  should  be  tied  and  yoked 
to  a  good  woman  and  have  increase  of  children :  if 
one  demanded  whether  he  should  buy  lands  and 
possessions,  they  said  that  there  was  much  reason 
in  the  mentioning  of  the  oxen  and  the  yoke,  which 
foretold  that  he  should  have  much  ground  that 
should  yield  his  increase :  if  one  demanded  the 
advice  of  heaven  whether  he  should  have  a  good  and 
prosperous  voyage,  they  said  he  should  have  good 
success  because  that  now  these  gentlest  of  beasts 
were  joined  together  and  ready  to  go,  and  that  of 
the  increase  of  the  soil  should  be  his  profit :  if  one 
demanded  whether  he  should  vanquish  his  enemies, 
or  prevail  in  pursuit  of  thieves,  they  said  that  the 
oracle  foretold  victory,  for  that  his  enemies'  necks 
should  be  brought  under  the  yoke,  and  that  a  rich 
and  fertile  gain  should  be  gotten  from  the  thieves' 

Thus  by  the  telling  of  fortunes  so  cleverly  and 
cunningly  they  gathered  a  great  quantity  of  money  ; 
but  when  they  were  weary  with  giving  of  answers, 
they  drove  me  away  before  them  the  next  night, 
through  a  lane  which  was  more  dangerous  and  stony 
than  the  way  which  we  had  gone  before ;  for  it  was 
full  of  deep  and  gaping  holes,  sometimes  wet  with 

attempt  a  poetical  version  of  the  lines.     I  may  perhaps  quote 
that  of  the  late  Dean  Farrar : 

"The  patient  oxen  plough  the  soil. 
And  harvests  rich  repay  their  toil." 



nosam,  partim  stagnant!  palude  fluidam  et  alibi  sub- 
luvie  caenosa  lubricam.  Crebris  denique  offensaculis 
et  assiduis  lapsibus  iam  contusis  cruribus  meis  vix  tan- 
dem ad  campestres  semitas  fessus  evadere  potui.  Et 
ecce  nobis  repente  de  tergo  manipulus  armati  super- 
currunt  equites,  aegreque  cohibita  equorum  curriculi 
rabiej  Philebum  ceterosque  comites  eius  involant 
avidi  colloque  constricto  et  sacrileges  impurosque 
compellantes  interdum  pugnis  obverberant,  necnoii 
manicis  etiam  cunctos  coartaiit  et  identidem  urgenti 
sermone  com  prim  unt,  promerent  potius  aureum  can- 
tharum,  promerent  auctoramentum  illud  sui  sceleris, 
quod  simulatione  sollemnium,  quae  in  operto  facti- 
taverant,  ab  ipsis  pulvinaribus  matris  deum  clanculo 
furati,  prorsus  quasi  possent  tanti  facinoris  evadere 
supplicium  tacita  profectione,  adhuc  luce  dubia 
10  pomerium  'pervaserint.  Nee  defuit  qui,  manu  super 
dorsum  meum  iniecta,  in  ipso  deae  quam  gerebam 
gremio  scrutatus,  repperiret  atque  incoram  omnium 
aureum  depromeret  cantharum.  Nee  isto  saltern 
tarn  nefario  scelere  impuratissima  ilia  capita  con- 
futari  terrerive  potuere,  sed  mendacioso  risu  cavil- 
lantes,  "  En "  inquiunt  "  Indignae  rei  scaevitatem, 
qua  plerumque  insontes  periclitantur  homines !  Prop- 
ter  unicum  caliculum,  quern  deum  mater  sorori  suae 
deae  Syriae  hospitale  munus  obtulit,  noxios  reli- 
gionis  antistites  ad  discrimen  vocari  capitis  !  "  Haec 


quagmires  and  foggy  marshes,  and  sometimes  very 
slippery  with  mud  and  filth,  whereby  my  legs  failed 
me  with  often  stumbling  and  falling,  in  such  sort 
that  I  could  scarce  come  wearily  and  with  bruised 
legs  to  the  plain  field-paths.  And  behold  by  and  by 
from  behind  a  great  company  of  the  inhabitants  of 
the  town,  armed  with  weapons  and  on  horseback, 
overtook  us,  hardly  pulling  up  the  horses  of  their 
car,  for  they  galloped  furiously,  they  incontinently 
arrested  Philebus  and  his  priests,  and  tied  them  by 
the  necks  and  beat  them  cruelly,  calling  them  sacri- 
legious thieves  and  vile  robbers,  and  after  that  they 
had  manacled  their  hands  they  urged  them  furiously 
again  and  again  :  "  Shew  us,"  quoth  they,  "  The  cup 
of  gold,  the  temptation  of  your  crime,  which  you 
have  taken  privily  away  from  the  very  shrine  of  the 
Mother  of  the  gods,  under  the  colour  of  your  solemn 
religion,  which  you  must  needs  perform  secretly  shut 
up  in  her  temple ;  and  now  you  think  to  escape  in 
the  night  without  punishment  for  your  deed,  leaving 
the  boundaries  of  town  and  setting  secretly  forth 
before  it  be  yet  light."  By  and  by  one  came  towards 
me,  and  thrusting  his  hand  into  the  bosom  of  the 
goddess  which  I  bare,  found  and  brought  out  before 
them  all  the  cup  which  they  had  stole :  howbeit,  for 
all  their  robbery  which  appeared  evident  and  plain, 
those  accursed  and  vile  creatures  would  not  be  con- 
founded or  abashed,  but,  jesting  and  laughing  out  the 
matter,  began  to  say  :  "  Is  it  reason,  masters,  that 
you  should  thus  rigorously  intreat  us,  as  often  befalls 
innocent  men,  and  threaten  to  bring  the  faithful 
priests  of  religion  into  danger  of  death  for  a  small 
trifling  cup,  which  the  Mother  of  the  gods  deter- 
mined to  give  to  her  sister  for  a  present?"  How- 
beit, for  all  their  lies  and  cavillations,  they  were 



et  alias  similes  afannas  frustra  blaterantes  eos  re- 
trorsus  abducunt  pagani  statimque  vinctos  in  Tul- 
lianum  compingunt  cantharoque  et  ipso  simulacro, 
quod  gerebam,  apud  fani  donarium  redditis  ac  con- 
secratis,  altera  die  productum  me  rursum  voce  prae- 
conis  venui  subiciunt  septemque  nummis  carius,  quam 
prius  me  comparaverat  Philebus,  quidam  pistor  de 
proximo  castello  praestinavit,  protinusque  fru- 
mento  etiam  coemto  affatim  onustum  per  iterarduum 
scrupis  et  cuiuscemodi  stirpibus  infestum  ad  pistri- 
num,  quod  exercebat,  perducit. 

Ibi  complurium  iumentorum  multivii  circuitus  in- 
torquebant  molas  ambage  varia ;  nee  die  tantum, 
verum  perpeti  etiam  nocte  prorsus  instabili  machina- 
rum  vertigine  lucubrabant  pervigilem  farinam.  Sed 
mihi,  ne  rudimentum  servitii  perhorrescerem  scilicet, 
novus  dominus  loca  lautia  prolixe  praebuit :  nam  et 
diem  primum  ilium  feriatum  dedit  et  cibariis  abun- 
danter  instruxit  praesepium.  Nee  tamen  ilia  otii 
saginaeque  beatitudo  duravit  ulterius,  sed  die  se- 
quenti  molae,  quae  maxima  videbatur,  matutinus 
adstituor  et  illico  velata  facie  propeller  ad  incurva 
spatia  flexuosi  canalis,  ut  in  orbe  termini  circum- 
fluentis  reciproco  gressu  mea  recalcans  vestigia 
vagarer  errore  certo.  Nee  tamen  sagacitatis  ac 
prudentiae  meae  prorsus  oblitus  facilem  me  tiro- 
cinio  disciplinae  praebui  sed,  quamquam  frequenter, 
cum  inter  homines  agerem,  raachinas  similiter  cir- 
cumrotari  vidissem,  tamen,  ut  expers  et  ignarus 
operis,  stupore  mentito  defixus  haerebam,  quod 
enim  rebar  ut  minus  aptum  et  huiusmodi  ministerio 


carried  back  to  the  town  and  put  in  prison  by  the 
inhabitants,  who,  taking  the  cup  of  gold  and  the 
image  of  the  goddess  which  I  bare,  did  put  and  con- 
secrate them  amongst  the  treasure  of  the  temple. 
The  next  day  I  was  carried  to  the  market  to  be  sold 
by  the  voice  of  the  crier,  and  again  my  price  was  set ; 
but  I  was  sold  at  seven  pence  more  than  Philebus 
gave  for  me.  There  fortuned  to  pass  by  a  baker  of 
the  next  village,  who,  after  that  he  had  bought  a 
great  deal  of  corn,  bought  me  likewise  to  carry  it 
home,  and  when  he  had  well  laded  me  therewith,  he 
drove  me  through  a  stony  and  dangerous  way  to  his 

There  I  saw  a  great  company  of  horses  that  went 
round  and  round  in  the  mill  turning  the  stones  and 
grinding  of  corn  :  and  not  by  day  only,  but  at  night 
also  they  must  needs  still  work  at  the  mill  and  make 
flour  in  those  engines  that  never  stood  still :  but  lest 
I  should  be  discouraged  at  the  first,  my  master  enter- 
tained me  well  in  a  luxurious  place ;  for  the  first  day 
I  had  a  holiday  and  did  nothing  but  fare  daintily  at 
a  full  manger.  Howbeit,  such  mine  ease  and  felicity 
did  not  long  endure ;  for  the  next  day  following  I 
was  tied  to  the  greatest  mill  (as  it  seemed  to  me) 
betimes  in  the  morning  with  my  face  covered,  and 
placed  in  a  small  path  of  a  circle  to  the  end  in  turn- 
ing and  winding  so  often  one  way  I  might  keep  a 
certain  course  and  tread  in  my  own  path  again  and 
again.  ^  But  1  forgat  not  my  wisdom  and  careful 
prudence  so  as  to  lend  myself  too  easily  to  the 
new  labour,  for  although  when  I  was  a  man  I  had 
seen  many  such  horse-mills,  and  knew  well  enough 
how  they  should  be  turned,  yet  feigning  myself 
ignorant  of  such  kind  of  toil  I  stood  still  and 
would  not  go,  whereby  I  thought  I  should  be  taken 
2D  417 


satis  inutilera  me  ad  alium  quempiam,  utique  levi- 
orem  laborem  legatum  iri,  vel  otiosum  certe  ciba- 
tum  iri.  Sed  frustra  sollertiam  damnosam  exercui  : 
complures  enim  protinus  baculis  arraati  me  circum- 
steterunt  atque,  ut  eram  luminibus  obtectis  securus 
etiamnunc,  repente  signo  dato  et  clamore  conferto 
plagas  ingerentes  acervatim,  adeo  me  strepitu  turbu- 
lentant,  ut  cunctis  consiliis  abiectis  illico  scitissime 
taeniae  sparteae  totus  innixus  discursus  alacres  obi- 
12rem:  at  subita  sectae  commutatione  risum  toto 
coetu  commoveram. 

lamque  maxima  diei  parte  transacta  defectum  alio- 
quin  me,helcio  sparteo  dimoto,  nexu  machinae  libera- 
tum  applicant  praesepio.  At  ego  quamquam  eximie 
fatigatus  et  refectione  virium  vehementer  indiguus 
et  prorsus  fame  perditus,  tamen  familiari  curiositate 
attonitus  et  satis  anxius,  postposito  cibo  qui  copio- 
sus  aderat,  inoptabilis  officinae  disciplinam  cum  de- 
lectatione  quadam  arbitrabar.  Dii  boni !  Quales  illic 
homunculi  vibicibus  lividis  totam  cutem  depicti  dor- 
sumque  plagosum  scissili  centunculo  magis  inumbrati 
quam  obtecti,  nonnulli  exiguo  tegili  tanturn  modo 
pubem  iniecti,  cuncti  tamen  sic  tu::!cati  ut  essent 
per  pannulos  manifest!,  frontes  litterati  et  capillum 
seinirasi  et  pedes  annulati,  turn  lurore  deformes  et 
fumosis  tenebris  vaporosae  caliginis  palpebras  adesi 
atque  adeo  male  luminati,  et  in  modum  pugilum, 


from  the  mill  as  an  ass  unapt,  and  put  to  some 
other  lighter  labour,  or  else  to  be  driven  into  the 
fields  to  pasture  :  but  my  subtlety  did  me  small 
profit,  for  by  and  by  when  the  mill  stood  still,  the 
many  servants  came  about  me  armed  with  sticks, 
whereas  I  suspected  nothing,  mine  eyes  being 
covered,  and  suddenly  when  a  sign  was  given  they 
cried  out  and  plentifully  beat  me  forward,  in  such 
sort  that  I  could  not  stay  to  advise  myself,  because 
of  the  sudden  attack  and  noise,  but  leaned  sturdily 
against  my  rope  and  went  briskly  on  my  appointed 
path  ;  whereby  all  the  company  laughed  to  see  so 
sudden  a  change. 

When  a  good  part  of  the  day  was  past,  so  that  1 
was  not  able  to  endure  any  longer,  they  took  oft'  mv 
harness,  and  tied  me  to  the  manger;  but  although 
my  bones  were  weary,  and  that  I  needed  to  refresh 
myself  with  rest  and  provender,  being  utterly  dead 
with  hunger,  yet  I  was  so  curious  and  anxious  also, 
that  I  did  greatly  delight  to  behold  the  horrible 
fashion  of  the  baker's  mill,  in  so  much  that  I  could 
not  eat  nor  drink  while  I  looked  on,  although  there 
was  food  in  plenty.  O  good  Lord,  what  a  sort  of  poor 
slaves  were  there ;  some  had  their  skin  bruised  all 
over  black  and  blue,  some  had  their  backs  striped 
with  lashes  and  were  but  covered  rather  than  clothed 
with  torn  rags,  some  had  their  members  only  hidden 
by  a  narrow  cloth,  all  wore  such  ragged  clouts  that 
you  might  perceive  through  them  all  their  naked 
bodies,  some  were  marked  and  burned  in  the  fore- 
head with  hot  irons,  some  had  their  hair  half 
clipped,  some  had  shackles  on  their  legs,  ugly  and 
evil  favoured,  some  could  scarce  see,  their  eyes  and 
faces  were  so  black  and  dim  with  smoke,  their  eye- 
lids all  cankered  with  the  darkness  of  that  reeking 



qui  pulvisculo  perspersi  dimicant,  farinulenta  cinere 
13  sordide  candidati.     lam  de  meo  iumentario  contu- 
bernio  quid  vel  ad  quern  modum  memorem?    Quales 
illi  muli  senes  vel  cantherii  debiles  !    Circa  praesepium 
capita  demersi  contruncabant  moles  palearum,  cer- 
vices cariosa  vulnerum  putredine  follicantes,nares  lan- 
guidas  assiduo  pulsu  tussedinis  hiulci,  pectora  copulae 
sparteae  tritura  continua  exulcerati,  costas  perpetua 
castigatione  ossium  tenus  renudati,  ungulas  multivia 
circumcursione  in  enorme  vestigium  porrecti  totum- 
que  corium  veterno  atque  scabiosa  macie  exasperati. 
Talis  familiae  funestum  mihi  etiam  metuens  exem- 
plum   veterisque   Lucii   fortunam   recordatus    et   ad 
ultimam    salutis   metam    detrusus    summisso   capite 
maerebam.    Nee  ullum  uspiam  cruciabilis  vitae  sola- 
cium  aderat,  nisi  quod  ingenita  mihi  curiositate  re- 
creabar  dum  praesentiam  meam  parvi  facientes  libere 
quae  volunt  omnes  et  agunt  et  loquuntur.     Nee  im- 
merito  priscae  poeticae  divinus  auctor    apud  Graios 
sumniae   prudentiae  virum  monstrare  cupiens  mul- 
tarum  civitatum  obitu  et  variorum  populorum  cognitu 
summas  adeptum  virtutes  cecinit :  nam  et  ipse  gratas 
gratias  asino  meo  memini,    quod   me   suo   celatum 
tegmine  variisque  fortunis   exercitatum,  etsi  minus 
14  prudentem,  multiscium  reddidit.     Fabulam  denique 


place,  half  blind  and  sprinkled  black  and  white 
with  dirty  flour  like  boxers  which  fight  together  be- 
fouled with  sand.  But  how  should  I  speak  of  the 
horses  my  companions,  how  they,  being  old  mules  or 
weak  horses,  thrust  their  heads  into  the  manger  and 
ate  the  heaps  of  straws  ?  They  had  their  necks  all 
wounded  and  worn  away  with  old  sores,  they  rattled 
their  nostrils  with  a  continual  cough,  their  sides  were 
bare  with  continued  rubbing  of  their  harness  and 
great  travail,  their  ribs  were  broken  and  the  bones 
did  show  with  perpetual  beating,  their  hoofs  were 
battered  very  broad  with  endless  walking,  and 
their  whole  skin  ragged  by  reason  of  mange  and 
their  great  age.  When  I  saw  this  dreadful  sight,  I 
greatly  began  to  fear  lest  I  should  come  to  the  like 
state :  and  considering  with  myself  the  good  fortune 
which  I  was  sometime  in  when  I  was  a  man,  I  greatly 
despaired  and  lamented,  holding  down  my  head,  but 
I  saw  no  comfort  or  consolation  of  my  torments,  saving 
that  my  mind  and  my  inborn  curiosity  was  somewhat 
recreated  to  hear  and  understand  what  every  man 
said  and  did,  for  they  neither  feared  nor  doubted 
my  presence.  At  that  time  I  remembered  how  truly 
Homer,  the  divine  author  of  ancient  Poetry  among 
the  Greeks,  described  him  to  be  a  wise  man  1  which 
had  travelled  divers  countries  and  nations,  and  by 
straitly  observing  them  all  had  obtained  great  virtue 
and  knowledge.  Wherefore  I  do  now  give  great 
thanks  to  my  assy  form,  in  that  by  that  mean  I  have 
seen  the  experience  of  many  things,  and  am  become 
more  experienced  (notwithstanding  that  1  was  then 
very  little  wise). '  3ut  I  will  tell  you  a  pretty  and 
handsome  jest,  which  coineth  nowto  my  remembrance, 
1  The  description  of  Ulysses  in  the  opening  Hues  of  the 


bonam  prae  ceteris  suavem  compertu  ad  aures  vestras 
afferre  decrevi,  et  en  occipio. 

Pistor  ille  qui  me  pretio  suum  fecerat,  bonus  alio- 
quin  vir  et  apprime  modestus,  pessimam  et  ante 
cunctas  mulieres  longe  deterrimam  sortitus  coniu- 
gam  poenas  extremas  tori  Larisque  sustinebat,  ut 
Hercule  eius  vicem  ego  quoque  tacitus  frequenter 
ingemescerem.  Nee  enim  vel  unum  vitium  iiequis- 
simae  illi  feminae  deerat,  sed  omnia  prorsus,  ut  in 
quandam  caenosam  latrinam,  in  eius  animum  flagitia 
confluxerant :  saeva,  scaeva,  virosa,  ebriosa,  pervicax, 
pertinax,  in  rapinis  turpibus  avara,  in  sumptibus  foedis 
profusa,  inimica  fidei,  hostis  pudicitiae  :  tune  spretis 
atque  calcatis  divinis  numinibus  in  vicem  certae 
religionis  mentita  sacrilega  praesumptione  dei,  quern 
praedicaret  unicum,  confictis  observationibus  vacuis 
fallens  omnes  homines  et  miserum  maritum  decipiens 
matutino  mero  et  continue  stitpro  corpus  manciparat. 
1 5  Talis  ilia  mulier  miro  me  persequebatur  odio :  nam 
et  antelucio  recubans  adhuc  subiungi  machinae 
novicium  clamabat  asinum,  et  statim  ut  cubiculo 
primum  processerat  insistens  iubebat  incoram  sui 
plagas  mihi  quam  plurimas  irrogari  et,cum  tempestivo 
prandio  laxarentur  iumenta  cetera,  longe  tardius 
applicari  praesepio  iubebat.  Quae  saevitia  multo 
mihi  magis  genuinam  curiositatem  in  suos  mores 
ampliaverat :  nam  et  assiduo  plane  commeantem  in 
eius  cubiculum  quendam  sentiebam  iuvenem,  cuius 
et  faciem  videre  cupiebam  ex  summo  studio,  si  tamen 


to  the  intent  your  ears  may  be  delighted  in  hearing 
the  same,  and  I  do  now  begin  it. 

The  baker  which  bought  me  was  an  honest  and 
sober  man,  but  his  wife  the  most  pestilent  woman  in 
all  the  world,  in  so  much  that  he  endured  with  her 
many  miseries  and  afflictions  to  his  bed  and  house, 
so  that  I  myself  did  secretly  pity  his  estate  and 
bewail  his  evil  fortune :  for  there  was  not  one  single 
fault  that  was  lacking  to  her,  but  all  the  mis- 
chiefs that  could  be  devised  had  flowed  into  her 
heart  as  into  some  filthy  privy ;  she  was  crabbed, 
cruel,  cursed,  drunken,  obstinate,  niggish,  covetous 
in  base  robberies,  riotous  in  filthy  expenses,  an  enemy 
to  faith  and  chastity,  a  despiser  of  all  the  gods  whom 
others  did  honour,  one  that  affirmed  that  she  had 
instead  of  our  sure  religion  an  only  god  by  herself,1 
whereby,  inventing  empty  rites  and  ceremonies,  she 
deceived  all  men,  but  especially  her  poor  husband, 
delighting  in  drinking  wine,yea, early  in  the  morning, 
and  abandoning  her  body  to  continual  whoredom. 
This  mischievous  quean  hated  me  in  such  wonder- 
ful sort  that  she  commanded  every  day,  before  she 
was  up,  that  I,  the  new  ass,  should  be  put  in  the 
mill  to  grind  :  and  the  first  thing  which  she  would 
do  in  the  morning,  when  she  had  left  her  chamber, 
was  to  see  me  cruelly  beaten,  and  that  I  should 
grind  and  be  kept  from  the  manger  long  after  the 
other  beasts  did  feed  and  take  rest.  When  I  saw 
that  I  was  so  cruelly  handled,  she  gave  me  great 
desire  to  learn  her  conversation  and  her  life ;  for 
I  saw  oftentimes  a  young  man,  which  would  privily 
go  into  her  chamber,  whose  face  I  did  greatly  desire 

l  It  is  supposed  that  Apuleius  represents  this  abandoned 
woman  as  a  Christian,  and  so  expresses  his  dislike  and  con- 
tempt of  the  new  religion. 



velamentum  capitis  libertatem  tribuisset  meis  ali- 
quando  luminibus ;  nee  enim  mihi  sollertia  defuisset 
ad  detegenda  quoquo  modo  pessimae  feminae 
flagitia.  Sed  anus  quaedam  stuprum  sequestra  et 
adulterorum  internuntia  de  die  cotidie  inseparabilis 
aderat,  cum  qua  protinus  ientaculo  ac  dehinc  vino 
mero  mutuis  vicibus  velitata  scaenas  fraudulentas 
in  exitium  miserrimi  mariti  subdolis  ambagibus  con- 
struebat.  At  ego,  quamquam  graviter  suscensens 
errori  Fotidis,  quae  me  dum  avem  fabricat,  perfecit 
asinum,  isto  tamen  vel  unico  solacio  aerumnabilis 
deformitatis  meae  recreabar,  quod  auribus  grandis- 
simis  praeditus  cuncta  longule  etiam  dissita  facillime 

16  Denique    die    quadam    madidae 1    illius   aniculae 
sermo  talis  meas  affertur  aures  :  "  De  isto  quidem, 
mi  herilis,  tecum  ipsa  videris,  quem  sine  meo  consilio 
pigrum  et  formidulosum  familiarem  istum  sortita  es, 
qui  insuavis  et  odiosi  mariti  tui  caperratum  super- 
cilitim    ignaviter    perhorrescit    ac    per   hoc   amoris 
languidi  desidia   tuos  volentes  amplexus  discruciat. 
Quanto  melior  Philesitherus  adulescens  et  formosus 
et  liberalis  et  strenuus  et  contra  maritorum  inefficaces 
diligentias    constantissimus,    dignus    Hercule    solus 
omnium  matronarum    deliciis    perfrui,   dignus    solus 
coronam  auream  capite  gestare,  vel  ob  unicum  istud, 
quod  nunc  nuper  in  quendam  zelotypum  maritum  ex- 
imio  studio  commentus  est.     Audi  denique  et  amato- 
rum  diversum  ingenium  compara. 

17  "Nosti   quendam    Barbarum  nostrae  civitatis  de- 
curionem,  quem  Scorpionem  prae  morum  acritudine 
vulgus  appellat?     Hie  uxorem  generosam  et  eximia 

l  Heinsius'   emendation   for   the   MSS'   timidae.      Helm's 
intimidae  may  well  be  right. 



to  see,  but  I  could  not,  by  reason  mine  eyes  were 
covered  every  day :  and  verily,  if  I  had  been  free 
and  at  liberty,  I  would  have  discovered  all  her 
abomination.  She  had  an  old  woman,  a  bawd,  a 
messenger  of  mischief,  that  daily  haunted  to  her 
house,  and  made  good  cheer  with  her  at  breakfast, 
and  then  they  would  drink  wine  unmixed,  and  after 
this  first  skirmish  they  would  contrive  and  plot  to 
the  utter  undoing  and  impoverishment  of  her 
husband :  but  I,  that  was  greatly  offended  with  the 
negligence  of  Fotis,  who  made  me  an  ass  instead  of 
a  bird,  did  yet  comfort  myself  for  the  miserable 
deformity  of  my  shape  by  this  only  mean,  in  that  I 
had  long  ears,  whereby  I  might  hear  all  things  that 
were  done  even  afar  off. 

On  a  day  I  heard  the  shameless  old  bawd  say  to 
the  baker's  wife  :  "  Dame,  you  have  chosen  (notwith- 
standing my  counsel)  a  young  man  to  your  lover,  who 
as  meseemeth  is  dull,  fearful,  without  any  grace,  and 
dastardly  coucheth  at  the  frowning  looks  of  your 
odious  husband,  whereby  you  have  no  delight  nor 
pleasure  with  him.  How  far  better  is  the  young 
man  Philesitherus,  who  is  comely,  beautiful,  in  the 
flower  of  his  youth,  liberal,  courteous,  valiant,  and 
stout  against  the  diligent  pryings  and  watches  of 
husbands,  alone  worthy  to  embrace  the  worthiest 
dames  of  this  country,  and  alone  worthy  to  wear  a 
crown  of  gold,  be  it  for  one  part  alone  that  he 
played  with  clever  wit  to  one  that  was  jealous  over 
his  wife.  Hearken  how  it  was,  and  then  judge  the 
diversity  of  these  two  lovers. 

"  Know  you  one  Barbarus,  a  senator  of  our  town, 
whom  the  vulgar  people  call  likewise  Scorpion  for 
his  peevish  manners  ?  This  Barbarus  had  a  gentle- 
woman to  his  wife,  of  exceeding  beauty,  whom  he 



forraositate  praeditam  mira  custodela  munitam  domi 
suae  quam  cautissime  cohibebat."  Ad  haec  ultima 
pistoris  ilia  uxor  subiciens,  "  Quidni  ?  "  inquit  "  Novi 
diligenter.  Areten  meam  condiscipulam  memoras." 
"  Ergo "  inquit  anus  "  Nosti  totam  Philesitheri  et 
ipsius  fabulam  ?  "  "  Minima  gentium,"  inquit  "  Sed 
nosse  valde  cupio,  et  oro,  mater,  ordine  mihi  singula 
retexe."  Nee  commorata  ilia  sermocinatrix  immodica 
sic  anus  incipit : 

"  Barbarus  iste  cum  necessarian!  profectionem 
pararet  pudicitiamque  carae  coniugis  conser- 
vare  summa  diligentia  cuperet,  servulum  suum 
Myrmecem,  fidelitate  praecipua  cognitum,  secreto 
commonet  suaeque  dominae  custodelam  omnem 
permittit;  carcerem  et  perpetua  vincula,  mortem 
denique  violentana  defamem  comminatus,  si  quisquam 
hominum  vel  in  transitu  digito  tenus  earn  contigisset, 
idque  deierans  etiam  confirmat  per  omnia  divina 
numina.  Ergo  igitur  summo  pavore  perculsum 
Myrmecem  acerrimum  relinquens  uxori  secutorem, 
securam  dirigit  profectionem.  Tune  obstinato  animo 
vehementer  anxius  Myrmex  nee  usquam  dominam 
suain  progredi  sinebat,  et  lanificio  domestico  destrictam 
inseparabilis  assidebat,ac  tantum  necessario  vespertini 
lavacri  progressu  affixus  atque  conglutinatus,extremas 
manu  prendens  lacinias,  mira  sagacitate  commissae 
18  provinciae  fidem  tuebatur.  Sedardentem  Philesitheri 
vigilantiam  matronae  nobilis  pulchritude  latere  non 
potuit,  atque  hac  ipsa  potissimum  famosa  castitate  et 


caused  daily  to  be  enclosed  within  his  house  with 
diligent  custody."  Then  the  baker's  wife  said  :  "  I 
know  her  very  well,  for  her  name  is  Arete,  and  we 
two  dwelled  together  at  one  school."  "Then  you 
know,"  quoth  the  old  woman,  "The  whole  tale  of 
Philesitherus  ? "  "No,  verily,"  said  she,  "But  I 
greatly  desire  to  know  it :  therefore  I  pray  you, 
mother,  tell  me  the  whole  story."  By  and  by  the 
old  woman,  which  knew  well  to  babble,  began  to  tell 
as  followeth  : 

"  You  shall  understand  that  on  a  day  this  Barbarus, 
preparing  himself  to  ride  abroad,  and  willing  to  keep 
the  chastity  of  his  wife  (whom  he  so  well  loved) 
alone  to  himself,  called  his  man  Myrmex  (whose 
faith  he  had  tried  and  proved  in  many  things)  and 
secretly  committed  to  him  the  custody  of  his  wife, 
threatening  him.  that  if  any  man  did  but  touch  her 
with  his  finger  as  he  passed  by,  he  would  not  only 
put  him  in  prison,  and  bind  him  hand  and  foot,  but 
also  cause  him  to  be  put  to  death  cruelly  and  shame- 
fully ;  which  words  he  confirmed  by  oath  of  all  the 
gods  in  heaven,  and  so  he  departed  careless  away, 
leaving  Myrmex  to  follow  his  wife  with  all  diligence. 
When  Barbarus  was  gone  Myrmex,  being  greatly 
astonished  and  afraid  at  his  master's  threatenings, 
was  exceeding  constant  and  fixed  in  his  purport-, 
and  would  not  suffer  his  mistress  to  go  abroad, 
but  as  she  sat  all  day  a-spinning,  he  was  so  careful  he  sat  by  her  ;  and  when  night  came  he- 
went  with  her  to  the  baths,  holding  her  by  the 
garment,  so  faithful  he  was  to  fulfil  the  command- 
ment of  his  master  Howbeit.  the  beauty  of 
this  noble  matron  could  not  be  hidden  from  the 
burning  eyes  of  Philesitherus,  who  considering  lu-r 
great  chastity,  and  how  she  was  diligently  kept  by 


insignis  tutelae  nimietate  instinctus  atque  inflarn- 
matus,  quidvis  facere,  quidvis  pati  paratus,  ad  expug- 
nandam  tenacem  domus  disciplinam  totis  accingitur 
viribus ;  certusque  fragilitatis  humanae  fidei  et  quod 
pecuniae  cunctae  sint  difficultates  perviae  auroque 
soleant  adamantiriae  etiam  perfringi  fores,  opportune 
nanctus  Myrmecis  solitatem,  ei  amorem  suum  aperit 
et  supplex  eum  medelam  cruciatui  deprecatur;  nam 
sibi  statutam  decretamque  mortem  proximare  ni 
maturius  cupito  potiatur :  nee  eum  tamen  quicquam 
in  re  facili  formidare  debere,  quippe  cum  vespera 
solus,  fide  tenebrarum  contectus  atque  absconditus, 
introrepere  et  intra  momentum  temporis  remeare 
posset.  His  et  huiuscemodi  suadelis  validum  adde- 
bat  cuneum,  qui  rigentem  prorsus  servi  tenaci- 
tatem  violenter  diffinderet ;  porrecta  enim  manu  sua 
demonstrat  ei  novitate  nimia  candentes  solidos  aureos, 
quorum  viginti  quidem  puellae  destinasset,  ipsi  vero 
19  decem  libenter  ofFerret.  Exhorruit  Myrmex  inauditum 
facinus  et  occlusis  aunbus  effugit  protinus :  nee  auri 
tamen  splendor  flammeus  oculos  ipsius  exire  potuit, 
sed  quam  procul  semotus  et  domum  celeri  gradu 
pervectus  videbat  tamen  decora  ilia  monetae  lumina 
et  opulentam  praedam  iam  tenebat  animo,  miroque 
mentis  salo  et  cogitationum  dissensione  misellus  in 
diversas  sententias  carpebatur  ac  distrahebatur  :  illic 
fides,  hie  lucrum ;  illic  cruciatus,  hie  voluptas.  Ad 
postremum  tamen  formidinem  mortis  vicit  aurura ; 



Myrmex,  was  greatly  set  afire,  and  ready  to  do  or 
suffer  aught  to  gain  her ;  and  so  he  endeavoured  by 
all  kind  of  means  to  enterprise  the  matter,  and  to 
break  through  the  serene  guard  of  her  house,  and 
remembered  the  fragility  of  man,  that  might  be 
enticed  and  corrupted  with  money,  since  by  gold  even 
adamant  gates  may  be  opened.  On  a  day  when  he 
found  Myrmex  alone,  he  discovered  his  love,  desiring 
him  to  shew  his  favour  to  heal  him  thereof  (otherwise 
he  intended  and  should  certainly  die  unless  he  soon 
obtained  his  desire)  with  assurance  that  he  need  not 
fear,  as  he  might  privily  be  let  in  alone  and  under 
the  covering  of  the  night,  without  knowledge  of  any 
person,  and  in  a  moment  come  out  again.  To  these, 
and  other  gentle  words,  he  added  a  wedge  which 
might  violently  split  the  hard  tenacity  of  Myrmex ; 
for  he  shewed  him  glittering  new  gold  pieces  in  his 
hand,  saying  that  he  would  give  his  mistress  twenty 
crowns,  and  him  ten. 

"  Now  Myrmex,  hearing  these  words,  was  greatly 
troubled,  abhorring  in  his  mind  to  commit  so  wicked 
a  mischief;  wherefore  he  stopped  his  ears,  and 
turning  his  head  departed  away.  Howbeit,  although 
far  apart  and  having  now  speedily  gotten  him  home, 
the  glittering  hue  of  these  crowns  could  never  out  of 
his  mind,  but  he  seemed  to  see  the  money,  which  was 
so  worthy  a  prey,  before  his  eyes.  Wherefore,  poor 
Myrmex  was  tossed  on  the  waves  of  opinions  and 
was  utterly  distracted  and  could  not  tell  what  to  do; 
for  on  the  one  side,  he  considered  the  promise  which 
he  made  to  his  master,  and  the  punishment  which 
should  ensue  if  he  did  contrary,  while  on  the  other 
side,  he  thought  of  the  gain  and  passing  pleasure  of 
the  crowns  of  gold.  In  the  end  the  desire  of  the 
money  did  more  prevail  than  the  fear  of  death,  for 



nee  saltern  spatiocupido  formosae  pecuniae  leniebatur, 
sed  nocturnas  etiam  curas  invaserat  pestilens  avaritia, 
ut  quamvis  herilis  eum  comminatio  domi  cohiberet, 
auruin  tamen  foras  evocaret.  Tune  devorato  pudore 
et  dimota  cunctatione,  sic  ad  aures  dominae  mandatum 
perfert :  nee  a  genuiiia  levitate  descivit  mulier  sed 
execrando  metallo  pudicitiam  suam  protinus  auctorata 
est.  Ita  gaudio  perfusus  ad  suae  fidei  praecipitium 
praecipitat 1  Myrmex,  non  modo  capere,  verum 
saltern  contingere,  quam  exitio  suo  viderat,  pecuniam 
cupiens  et  magnis  suis  laboribus  perfectum  de- 
siderium  Philesithero  laetitia  percitus  iiuntiat, 
statimque  destinatum  praemium  reposcit ;  et  tenet 
nummos  aureos  maims  Myrmecis  quae  nee  aereos 
20  norat.  lamque  nocte  promota  solum  perducit  ad 
domum,  probeque  capita  contectum  ainatorem 
strenuum  infert  adusque  dominae  cubiculum.  Commo- 
duin  novis  amplexibus  amori  rudi  litabant,  commodum 
prima  stipeiidia  Veneri  militabant  nudi  rnilites ;  et 
contra  omnium  opinionem  captata  noctis  opportuni- 
tate  improvisus  maritus  assistit.  Suae  domus  ianuam 
iam  pulsat,  iam  clamat,  iam  saxo  fores  verberat,  et 
ipsa  tarditate  magis  magisque  suspectus  dira  com- 
minatur  Myrmeci  supplicia.  At  ille  repentino  malo 
perturbatus  et  misera  trepidatione  ad  inopiam  consilii 
deductus,  quod  solum  poterat,  nocturnas  tenebras 
sibi  causabatur  obsistere  quin  clavem  curiose  abscon- 
ditam  repperiret :  interdum  Philesitherus  cognito 
strepitu  raptim  tunicas  iniectus  sed  plane  prae  turba- 

1  A  verb  is  required  to  complete  the  sense.     Praecijiiiat  is 
van  der  Vliet's  suggestion. 



the  desire  of  the  flourishing  crowns  was  not  abated 
by  distance  of  space,  but  it  did  even  invade  his 
dreams  in  the  night  time,  and  where  the  menaces  of 
his  master  compelled  him  to  tarry  at  home,  the 
pestilent  avarice  of  the  gold  egged  him  out  of  doors ; 
wherefore,  putting  all  shame  aside  without  further 
delay,  he  declared  the  whole  matter  to  his  mistress ; 
who,  according  to  the  light  nature  of  women,  when 
she  heard  him  speak  of  so  great  a  sum,  put  her 
chastity  in  pawn  to  the  vile  money.  Myrmex,  seeing 
the  intent  of  his  mistress,  was  very  glad,  and  hastened 
to  the  ruin  and  breaking  of  his  faith,  and  for  great 
desire  that  the  gold  should  not  only  be  his,  but  that 
he  might  handle  the  same  instantly,  ran  hastily  to 
Philesitherus,  declaring  that  his  mistress  had  consented 
to  his  mind,  wherefore  he  demanded  the  gold  which 
he  promised  ;  and  then  incontinently  Philesitherus 
delivered  him  ten  golden  crowns,  who  had  never 
before  possessed  even  money  of  copper.  When  night 
came,  Myrmex  brought  him  disguised  and  covered 
into  his  mistress'  chamber;  but,  about  midnight, 
when  he  and  she  were  together  making  the  first 
sacrifice  of  love  unto  the  goddess  Venus,  behold,  her 
husband  (contrary  to  their  expectation)  came  and 
knocked  at  the  door,  calling  with  a  loud  voice  and 
beating  upon  it  with  a  stone.  Their  long  tarn  in u' 
increased  the  suspicion  of  the  master,  in  such  sort 
that  he  threatened  to  beat  Myrmex  cruelly  :  but  he, 
being  troubled  with  fear,  and  driven  to  his  latter 
shifts,  excused  the  matter  as  best  he  could,  saying 
that  he  could  not  find  the  key,  by  reason  it  had  been 
hidden  curiously  away  and  that  the  night  was  so 
dark.  In  the  mean  season  Philesitherus,  hearing  tli-- 
noise  at  the  door,  slipt  on  his  coat  (yet  barefoot. 
because  of  his  great  confusion)  and  privily  ran  out 



tione  pedibus  intectis  procurrit  cubiculo.  Tune 
Myrraex  tandem  clave  pessulis  subiecta  repandit 
fores  et  recipit  etiam  tune  fidem  deum  boantem 
dominum,  eoque  propere  cubiculum  petente,  clandes- 
tine transcursu  dimittit  Philesitherum.  Quo  iam  pro 
limine  liberato  securus  sui  clausa  domo  rursum  se 
reddidit  quieti. 

"  Sed  dum  prima  luce  Barbaras  procedit  cubiculo, 
videt  sub  lectulo  soleas  incognitas  quibus  inductus 
Philesitherus  irrepserat,  suspectisque  e  re  nata  quae 
gesta  sunt,  non  uxori,  non  ulli  familiarium  cordolio 
patefacto,  sublatis  iis  et  in  siiium  furtim  absconditis, 
iusso  tantum  Myrmece  per  conserves  vincto  forum 
versus  attrahi,  tacitos  secum  mugitus  iterans  rapidum 
dirigit  gressum,  certus  solearum  indicio  vestigium 
adulteri  posse  se  perfacile  indipisci.  Sed  ecce  per 
plateam  dum  Barbaras  vultu  turgido  subductisque 
superciliis  incedit  iratus  ac  pone  eum  Myrmex  vinculis 
obrutus,  non  quid  em  coram  noxae  prehensus,  con- 
scientia  tamen  pessima  permixtus,  lacrimis  uberibus 
ac  postremis  lamentationibus  inefficacem  commovet 
miserationem,  opportune  Philesitherus  occurrens, 
quamquam  diverse  quodam  negotio  destinatus,  re- 
pentina  tamen  facie  permotus,  non  enim  deterritus, 
recolens  festinationis  suae  delictum  et  cetera  conse- 
quenter  suspicatus  sagaciter,  extemplo  sumpta 
familiar!  constantia,  dimotis  servulis  invadit  cum 


of  the  chamber.  When  at  last  Myrmex  had  fitted 
the  key  into  the  lock  and  opened  the  door  to  his 
master  that  still  threatened  terribly  by  all  the  gods, 
and  had  let  him  in,  he  went  into  the  chamber  to 
his  wife ;  in  the  mean  while  Myrmex  let  out  Phile- 
sitherus,  and  when  he  had  seen  him  pass  the  thresh- 
old, he  barred  the  doors  safe,  and  went  to  bed, 
fearing  nothing. 

"  The  next  morning,  when  Barbaras  was  about 
leaving  his  chamber,  he  perceived  two  unknown 
slippers  lying  under  his  bed,  in  the  which  Phile- 
sitherus  had  entered  the  night  before.  Then  he 
conceived  a  great  suspicion  and  jealousy  in  his 
mind  :  howbeit,  he  would  not  discover  his  heart's 
sorrow  to  his  wife,  neither  to  any  other  of  his  house- 
hold, but  putting  secretly  the  slippers  in  his  bosom, 
commanded  his  other  servants  to  bind  Myrmex 
incontinently,  and  to  bring  him  quickly  bound  to 
the  justice  after  him,  groaning  and  wailing  inwardly 
within  himself,  and  thinking  verily  that  by  the 
means  of  the  slippers  lie  might  track  out  the  matter. 
It  fortuned  that  while  Barbarus  went  through  the 
street  towards  the  justice  with  a  countenance  of  fury 
and  rage,  and  Myrmex  fast  bound  followed  him 
weeping,  not  yet  because  he  was  found  guilty  before 
the  master,  but  by  reason  he  knew  his  own  con- 
science guilty  and  therefore  he  cried  bitterly  and 
called  upon  the  mercy  which  availed  him  nothing, 
behold.'  by  adventure  Philesitherus  (going  about 
other  earnest  business)  fortuned  to  meet  them  by 
the  way ;  who,  fearing  the  matter  which  he  so 
suddenly  saw,  yet  not  utterly  dismayed,  remembering 
that  which  he  had  forgotten  in  his  haste,  and  con- 
jecturing the  rest,  did  suddenly  invent  a  mean,  for 
that  he  was  of  great  confidence  and  present  mind, 
2E  *SS 


sumrrto    clarrtore   Myrmecem    pugnisque    malas    eiiis 

dementer 1  obtundens,  '  At  te '  inquit  '  Nequissimum 

et  periurtim  caput,  dominus  iste  tuns  et  cuncta  caeli 

numina,  quae  deierando  temere  devorasti,  pessimum 

pessime  perduint,  qui  de  balneis  soleas  hesterna  die 

mihi  furatus  es.     Dignus  Hercule,  dignus  qui  et  ista 

vincula  conteras  et  insuper  carceris  etiam  tenebras 

perferas.'     Hac    opportuna   fallacia   vigorati  iuvenis 

inductus,  immo  sublatus  et  ad  credulitatem  delapsus 

Barbarus>  postliminio  domum  regressus,  vocato  Myr- 

mece  soleas  illas  ofFerens  et  ignovit  ex  animo  et  uti 

domino  redderet,  cui  surripuerat,  siiasit." 

22       Hactenus  adhuc  anicula  garriente  suscipit  mulier  : 

"  Beatam  illam  quae  tarn  constantis  sodalis  libertate 

fruitur !     At  ego  misella  molae  etiam  sonum  et  ecce 

illius  scabiosi  asini    faciem  timentera  familiarem  in- 

cidi."  Ad  haec  anus  :  "  lam  tibi  ego  probe  suasum  et 

confirmatum  animi  amatorem  ilium  alacrem  vadimo- 

nium  sistam,"  et  insuper  condicta  vespertina  regres- 

sione  cubiculo  facessit.     At  pudica  uxor  statim  cenas 

saliares    comparat,  vina  pretiosa  defaecat,  pulmenta 

recentia  tuccetis  temperat  mensa  largiter  instructa. 

Denique  ut  dei  cuiusdam  adventus,  sic   expectatur 

adulteri ;    nam    et   opportune    maritus    foris    apud 

naccam  proximum  cenitabat.     Ergo  igitur  metis  die  2 

1  The  MSS  have  clemcntcr,  which  must  surely  be  wrong,  and 
Pricaeus    suggested   indementer.      I   have,  with   some   diffi- 
dence, written  dementer. 

2  The  MSS  have  mcridie  ;  but  the  old  woman  has  just  said 
that  she  will  be  back  at  evening,  so  that  I   have  printed 
Helm's  emendation. 



to  excuse  Myrmex ;  for  he  thrust  away  the  slaves 
and  ran  upon  him  and  beat  him  wildly  about 
the  head  with  his  fists,  saying:  'Ah,  mischievous 
varlet  that  thou  art,  and  perjured  knave,  it  were  a 
good  deed  if  thy  master  here  would  put  thee  to 
death,  and  all  the  gods  whom  thou  hast  hastily 
swallowed  down  with  thy  false  swearing,  for  thou  art 
worthy  to  be  imprisoned  in  a  dark  dungeon,  and  to 
wear  out  these  irons,  that  stolest  my  slippers  away 
when  thou  wert  at  the  baths  yesternight.'  Barbarus, 
hearing  these  words,  was  utterly  convinced  and 
deceived  by  the  timely  subtlety  of  that  clever 
youth,  and  returned  incontinently  home,  and  calling 
his  servant  Myrmex,  forgave  him  and  commanded 
him  to  deliver  the  slippers  again  to  the  right  owner, 
whence  he  had  stolen  the  same." 

The  old  woman  had  scarce  finished  her  tale, 
when  the  baker's  wife  began  to  say :  "  Verily  she 
is  blessed,  and  most  blessed,  that  hath  the  free 
fruition  of  so  worthy  a  lover;  but  as  for  me,  poor 
wretch,  I  am  fallen  into  the  hands  of  a  coward, 
who  is  afraid  every  clap  of  the  mill,  and  dares  do 
nothing  before  the  blind  face  of  yonder  scabbed 
ass."  Then  the  old  woman  answered:  "I  promise 
you  certainly,  if  you  will,  you  shall  have  this  young 
man,  that  is  firm  and  constant  of  mind,  as  well 
as  smart  and  brisk,  at  your  pleasure  this  very  even- 
ing," and  therewithal  she  departed  out  of  the 
chamber,  appointing  to  return  at  night.  In  the 
mean  season,  the  baker's  chaste  wife  made  ready  a 
lordly  supper  with  abundance  of  wine  and  exquisite 
fare,  fresh  meat  and  gravy,  and  waited  for  the  coming 
of  the  young  man  as  for  some  god :  for  it  happened 
by  good  fortune  that  her  husband  supped  at  a 
fuller's  that  lived  next  door.  When,  therefore, 



propinquante    helcio   tandem  absolutus  refectuique 
secure  redditus  non  tarn  Hercule  laboris  libertatem 
gratulabar,    quam    quod   revelatis    luminibus  libere 
iam   cunctas  facinorosae  mulieris   artes    prospectare 
poteram.      Sol   ipsum    quidem    delapsus    Oceanum 
subterrenas  orbis  plagas  illuminabat,  et  ecce  nequissi- 
mae   anus  adhaerens   later!  temerarius  adulter  ad- 
ventat,  puer  admodum    et   adhuc   lubrico  genarum 
splendore  conspicuus,  adhuc  adulteros  ipse  delectans  : 
hunc  multis  admodum  saviis  exceptum  mulier  cenam 
23  iubet  paratam    accumbere.     Sed  ut  primum   occur- 
soriam    potionem    et    inchoatum    gustum    extremis 
labiis  contingebat  adulescens,  multo  celerius  opinione 
rediens  maritus  adventat.     Tune  uxor  egregia  diras 
devotiones  in  eum  deprecata  et  crurum  ei  fragium 
abominata,    exsangui    formidine    trepidantem    adul- 
terum    alveo    ligneo,  quo   frumenta  confusa  purgari 
consuerantj     temere     propter     iacenti     suppositum 
abscondit,    ingenitaque    astutia     dissimulate     tanto 
flagitio,  intrepidum  mentita  vultum,  percontatur  de 
marito,   cur   utique   contubernalis   artissimi   deserta 
cenula  praematurus  afforet.     At  ille  dolenti  prorsus 
animo    suspirans    assidue,    "Nefarium"   inquit    "Et 
extremum  facinus  perditae  feminae  tolerare  nequiens 
fuga  me  proripui.     Hem  qualis,  dii  boni,  matrona, 
quam   fida  quamque  sobria  turpissimo   se   dedecore 
foedavit !      luro   per   istam   ego   sanctam    Cererem, 
me  nunc  etiam  meis  oculis  de  tali  muliere  minus  cre- 
dere."    His  instincta  verbis  mariti  audacissima  uxor 


the  day  was  coming  towards  its  term,  so  that  my 
harness  should  be  taken  off  and  that  I  should  rest 
myself  in  peace,  I  was  not  so  joyful  of  my  liberty,  as 
that  the  veil  being  taken  from  mine  eyes,  I  should 
see  all  the  abomination  of  this  mischievous  quean. 
When  night  was  come  and  the  sun  gone  down 
beneath  the  sea  to  lighten  the  under  part  of  the 
earth,  behold  the  old  bawd  and  the  young  lover  at 
her  side  came  to  the  door ;  and  he  seemed  to  me 
but  a  boy,  by  reason  that  his  cheeks  were  yet  smooth 
and  bright,  and  very  pleasant :  then  the  baker's  wife 
kissed  him  a  thousand  times,  and  receiving  him  cour- 
teously, placed  him  down  at  the  table.  But  he  had 
scarce  taken  any  first  draught  nor  eaten  the  first 
morsel,  when  the  good  man  (contrary  to  his  wife's 
expectation)  returned  home,  for  she  thought  he 
would  not  have  come  so  soon ;  but,  Lord,  how  she 
cursed  him,  good  woman,  praying  God  that  he  might 
break  his  legs  at  the  first  entry  in.  In  the  mean 
season  she  caught  her  lover,  that  was  now  very  pale 
and  trembling,  and  thrust  him  into  the  bin  that  lay 
near  by  some  chance,  where  she  accustomed  to  sift 
her  flour,  and  dissembling  her  wickedness  by  her 
wonted  craft,  put  on  a  firm  countenance  and  asked 
of  her  husband  why  he  came  home  so  soon,  and  left 
the  supper  of  his  dear  friend  so  early.  "  I  could  not 
abide,"  quoth  he,  deeply  sighing,  "  To  see  so  great  a 
mischief  and  wicked  fact  which  my  neighbour's  wife 
committed,  but  I  must  run  away.  Oh,  how  good  and 
trusty  a  matron  she  seemed,  but  what  a  harlot  is  she 
become,  and  how  she  hath  dishonoured  her  husband  ! 
I  swear  by  this  goddess  Ceres  that  if  I  had  not  seen 
it  with  mine  eyes  I  would  never  have  believed  i 
His  wife,  made  desirous  by  his  words  to  know  t 
matter,  desired  him  to  tell  what  she  had  done ;  and 



noscendae  rei  cupiens  non  cessat  obtundere  totam 
prorsus  a  principio  fabulam  promeret :  nee  de- 
stitit,  donee  eius  voluntati  succubuit  maritus  et 
sic,  ignarus  suorum,  domus  alienae  percenset  in- 
fortunium : 

24,  "  Contubernalis  mei  fullonis  uxor,  alioquin  servati 
pudoris,  ut  videbatur,  femina,  quae  semper  secundo 
rumore  gloriosa  Larem  mariti  pudice  gubernabat, 
occulta  libidine  prorumpit  in  adulterum  quempiam  : 
cumque  furtivos  amplexus  obiret  assidue,  ipso  illo 
denique  momento,  quo  nos  lauti  cenam  petebamus, 
cum  eodem  illo  iuvene  miscebatur  in  Venerem.  Ergo 
nostra  repente  turbata  praesentia,  subitario  ducta  con- 
silio,  eundem  ilium  subiectum  contegit  viminea  cavea, 
quae  fustium  flexu  tereti  in  rectum  aggerata  cumulum 
lacinias  circumdatas  suftusa  candido  fumo  sulphuris 
inalbabat,  eoque  Jam,  ut  sibi  videbatur,  tutissime  ce- 
lato  mensam  nobiscum  secura  participat.  Interdum 
acerrimo  gravique  odore  sulphuris  iuvenis  inescatus 
atque  obnubilatus  intercluso  spiritu  diffluebat,  utque 
est  ingenium  vivacis  metalli,  crebras  ei  sternu- 

25  tationes  commovebat.  Atque  ut  primum  e  regione 
mulieris  pone  tergum  eius  maritus  acceperat 
sonum  sternutationis — quod  enim  putaret  ab  ea  pro- 
fectum — solito  sermone  salutem  ei  fuerat  imprecatus, 
et  iterate  rursum  et  frequentato  saepius,  donee  rei 
nimietate  commotus  quod  res  erat  tandem  suspica- 
tur,  et  impulsa  mensa  protenus  remotaque  cavea  pro- 
ducit  hominem  crebros  anhelitus  aegre  reflantem ; 
inflammatusque  indignatione  contumeliae  gladium 
flagitans  iugulare  moriturum  gestiebat,  ni  respecto 
communi  periculo  vix  eum  ab  impetu  furioso  cohib- 
uissem,  asseverans  brevi  absque  noxa  nostri  suapte 
inimicum  eius  violentia  sulphuris  periturum :  nee 



she  ceased  not  to  urge  him  until  he  accorded  to  the 
request  of  his  wife,  and  ignorant  of  the  state  of  his 
own  house,  declared  the  mischance  of  another.  ' 

"  You  shall  understand,"  said  he,  "  That  the  wife  of 
the  fuller  my  companion,  who  seemed  to  be  a  wise 
and  chaste  woman,  regarding  her  own  horn-sty  and 
the  profit  of  her  house,  had  begun  secretly  to  love  a 
knave,  and  did  often  meet  him  :  and  this  very  night, 
as  we  came  back  to  supper  from  the  baths,  he  and 
she  were  together.  Then  she  was  troubled  by  <nir 
sudden  presence  and  thrust  him  into  a  mew  made 
with  twigs,  built  up  high  with  rods  woven  in  and 
out,  and  appointed  to  lay  on  clothes  to  make  them 
white  with  the  smoke  and  fume  of  brimstone :  and 
so  he  being  very  safe  hidden  therein  (as  she  thought) 
she  sat  with  us  at  the  table  to  colour  the  matter.  In 
the  mean  season  the  young  man,  covered  in  the  mew, 
could  not  forbear  oft  sneezing,  by  reason  of  the  sharp 
smoke,  for  he  was  wholly  surrounded  and  choked  with 
the  heavy  fumes  of  this  lively  sublimate.  The  good 
man,  thinking  it  had  been  his  wife  that  sneezed  (lor 
the  noise  thereof  came  from  behind  her  back)  cried, 
as  they  are  wont  to  say,  'Christ  help  '  ;  but  when  he 
sneezed  more  and  more,  he  suspected  the  matter. 
and  willing  to  know  who  it  was,  rose,  pushing  lxu-k 
the  table,  and  went  to  the  mew,  where  lie  found  the 
young  man  now  choked  well  nigh  dead  with  Mimke. 
When  he  understood  the,  whole  matter  he  wa>  p 
inflamed  with  anger  at  this  outrage  that  he  called 
for  a  sword  to  kill  him  :  and  undoubtedly  he  had 
so  done,  had  not  I  hardly  restrained  his  violent 
hands  from  his  purpose,  that  had  brought  danger  unto 
us  all,  assuring  him  that  his  enemy  would  die  wit 
the  force  of  the  brimstone  without  any  harm  which 
he  mio-ht  get  from  it :  howbeit,  my  words  would 


suadela  mea  sed  ipsius  rei  necessitate  lenitus,  quippe 
iaru  semivivum  ilium  in  proxumum  deportat  angipor- 
tum.  Turn  uxorem  eius  tacite  suasi  ac  denique  per- 
suasi  secederet  paululum  atque  ultra  limen  tabernae 
ad  quampiam  tantisper  familiarem  sibi  mulierem  mi- 
graret,1  quoad  spatio  fervens  mariti  sedaretur  animus, 
qui  tanto  calore  tantaque  rabie  perculsus  non  erat 
dubius  aliquid  etiam  de  se  suaque  coniuge  tristius 
profecto  cogitm-e.  Talium  contubemalis  epularum 
taedio  fugatus  Larem  reveni  meum." 

26  Haec    recensente    pistore    iamdudum    procax    et 
temeraria  mulier  verbis   execrantibus  fullonis  illius 
detestabatur  uxorem,  illam  perfidam,  illam  impudi- 
cam,  denique  universi  sexus  grande  dedecus,  quae 
suo  pudore  postposito  torique  genialis   calcato  foe- 
dere  Larem  mariti  lupanari  maculasset  infamia,  iam- 
que  perdita  nuptae  dignitate  prostitutae  sibi  nomen 
adsciverit :  addebat  et  tales  oportere  vivas  exuri  femi- 
nas.     Et  tamen  taciti  vulneris  et  suae  sordidae  con- 
scientiae  commonita,  quo  maturius  stupratorem  suum 
tegminis  cruciatu  liberaret,  identidem  suadebat  mari- 
tum  temperius  quieti  decedere.     At  ille,  utpote  in- 
tercepta  cena  profugerat  prorsus   ieiunus,   mensam 
potius  comiter  postulabat.     Apponebat  ei   propere, 
quamvis  invita  mulier,  quippini  destinatam  alii :  sed 
mihi  penita  carpebantur  praecordia    et   praecedens 
facinus  et  praesentem  deterrimae  feminae  constan- 
tiam  cogitanti  mecumque  sedulo  deliberabam,  si  quo 
modo  possem,  detectis  ac  revelatis  fraudibus,  auxilium 
meo  perhibere  domino,  illumque,  qui  ad  instar  testu- 
dinis  alveum    succubabat,  depulso   tegmine    cunctis 

27  palam  facere.     Sic  herili  contumelia  me  cruciatum 
tandem  caelestis  respexit  providentia  :    nam  senex 

1  A  verb  seems  to  have  dropped  out  of  the  text,     Migraret 
is  van  der  Vliet'e  suggestion. 



not  appease  his  fury,  but  as  necessity  required  he 
took  the  young  man  well  nigh  choked,  and  carried 
him  out  at  the  doors  to  the  nearest  lane.  In  the 
mean  season  I  counselled  his  wife  and  did  persuade 
her  to  leave  his  shop  and  absent  herself  at  some 
neighbour's  house  till  the  choler  of  her  husband  was 
pacified,  lest  he  should  be  moved  against  her,  and 
do  her  some  harm  and  to  himself  also.  And  so  being 
weary  of  their  supper,  I  forthwith  returned  home." 

When  the  baker  had  told  this  tale,  his  impudent 
and  rash  wife  began  to  curse  and  abhor  the  wife  of 
the  fuller,  calling  her  whore  and  shameless,  and  a 
great  shame  to  all  the  sex  of  women,  in  that  she 
had  lost  all  modesty,  broken  the  bond  of  her  hus- 
band's bed,  turned  his  house  into  a  bawdy-house, 
and  had  lost  the  dignity  of  a  spouse  to  become  an 
harlot ;  and  said  that  such  women  were  worthy  to 
be  burned  alive.  But  knowing  her  own  guilty  con- 
science and  proper  whoredom,  that  she  might  the 
sooner  save  her  lover  from  hurt  lying  in  the  bin,  she 
willed  her  husband  now  early  to  go  to  bed,  but  In-, 
having  lost  his  supper  and  eaten  nothing,  said  gently 
that  he  would  sup  before  he  went  to  rest :  wherefore 
she  was  compelled,  though  very  unwilling,  to  set 
such  things  on  the  table  as  she  had  prepared  for  her 
lover.  But  I  was  much  troubled  in  heart,  as  con- 
sidering the  past  great  mischief  of  this  wicked  qu.aii 
and  her  present  obstinacy  and  impudence,  and  de- 
vised with  myself  how  I  might  help  my  master  by 
revealing  the  matter,  and  by  kicking  away  the  cover 
of  the  bin  (where  like  a  snail  the  young  man  was 
couched)  make  her  whoredom  apparent  and  known. 
As  I  was  tormented  by  the  insult  put  upon  my  master, 
at  length  I  was  aided  by  the  providence  of  God,  for 
there  was  a  lame  old  man  to  whom  the  custody  of 



claudus,  cut  nostra  tutela  permissa  fuerat,  universa 
nos  iumenta,  id  hora  iam  postulante,  ad  lacum  proxu- 
raum  bibendi  causa  gregatim  prominabat.  Quae  res 
optatissimam  mihi  vindictae  subrainistravit  occa- 
sionem :  namque  praetergrediens  observatos  extre- 
mus  adulteri  digitos,  qui  per  angustias  cavi  tegminis 
prominebant,  obliquata  atque  infesta  ungula  com- 
pressos  usque  ad  summam  minutieni  contero,  donee 
intolerabili  dolore  commotus,  sublato  flebili  clamore, 
repulsoque  et  abiecto  alveo,  conspectui  profano  red- 
ditus  scaenam  propudiosae  mulieris  patefecit.  Nee 
taraen  pistor  damno  pudicitiae  magnopere  commotus 
exsangui  pallore  trepidantem  puerum  serena  f route 
et  propitiata  facie  commulcens  incipit :  "  Nihil  triste 
de  me  tibi,  fili,  metuas.  Non  sum  barbarus  nee 
agresti  morum  squalore  praeditus,  nee  ad  exem- 
plum  naccinae  truculentiae  sulphuris  te  letali  fumo 
necabo,  ac  ne  iuris  quidem  severitate  lege  de  adul- 
teriis  ad  discrimen  vocabo  capitis  tarn  venustum  tam- 
que  pulchellum  puellum,  sed  plane  cum  uxore  mea 
partiario  tractabo  ;  nee  herciscundae  familiae  sed  com- 
muni  dividundo  formula  dimicabo,  ut  sine  ulla  con- 
troversia  vel  dissensione  tribus  nobis  in  uno  conveniat 
lectulo.  Nam  et  ipse  semper  cum  mea  coniuge  tarn 
concorditer  vixi,  ut  ex  secta  prudentium  eadem  nobis 
ambobus  placerent.  Sed  nee  aequitas  ipsa  patitur 
habere  plus  auctoritatis  uxorem  quam  maritum." 
28  Talis  sermonis  blanditie  cavillatum  deducebat  ad 



us  was  committed,  that  drove  me,  poor  ass.  and  the 
other  horses  in  a  herd  to  the  water  to  drink,  and 
the  time  was  then  come  ;  then  had  I  good  occasion 
ministered  to  my  revenge,  for  as  I  passed  by  I  per- 
ceived the  fingers  of  the  young  man  in  the  narrow 
space  under  the  side  of  the  bin,  and  lifting  up  my 
heels  I  spurned  the  flesh  thereof  with  the  force  of 
my  hoofs,  and  crushed  them  small,  where  by  the  great 
pain  thereof  he  was  compelled  to  cry  out,  and  to  throw 
down  the  bin  on  the  ground,  and  so  the  whoredom 
of  the  baker's  wife  was  known  and  revealed.  The 
baker,  seeing  this,  was  little  moved  at  the  dishonesty 
of  his  wife,  but  he  took  the  young  man,  pair  and 
trembling  for  fear,  by  the  hand,  and  with  cold  and 
courteous  Avords  spake  in  this  sort :  "  Fear  not  any 
trouble  from  me,  my  son,  nor  think  that  I  am  so 
barbarous  or  cruel  or  rustical  a  person  that  I  would 
stifle  thee  with  the  smoke  of  sulphur,  as  our  neigh- 
bour the  fuller  accustometh,  nor  will  I  punish  thee 
accord  to  the  rigour  of  the  Julian  law,  which  coin- 
mandeth  that  adulterers  should  be  put  to  death. 
No,  no,  I  will  not  execute  any  cruelty  against 
so  fair  and  comely  a  young  man  as  you  be, 
but  we  will  divide  our  pleasure  between  us; 
I  will  not  sue  thee  for  a  division  of  our  inheri- 
tance, but  we  will  be  equal  partners  by  the 
sharing  all  three  of  one  bed.  For  never  hath 
there  been  any  debate  nor  dissension  between 
me  and  my  wife,  but  both  of  us  may  be  contented, 
for  I  have  always  lived  with  her  in  such  tranquillity 
that  according  to  the  saying  of  the  wise  men,  the 
one  hath  said,  that  the  other  holdeth  for  law ;  but 
indeed  equity  will  not  suffer  but  that  the  husband 
should  bear  more  authority  than  the  wife." 
these  and  like  smooth  and  jesting  words  he 



torum  nolentem  puerum,  sequentem  tamen,  et  pudi- 
cissima  ilia  uxore  altrorsus  disclusa  solus  ipse  cum 
puero  Cubans  gratissima  corruptarum  nuptiarum  vin- 
dicta  perfruebatur.  Sed  cum  prinium  rota  solis  lucida 
diem  peperit,  vocatis  duobus  e  familia  validissimis, 
quam  altissime  sublato  puero,  ferula  nates  eius  obver- 
berans,  "  Tu  autem,"  inquit  "  Tam  mollis  ac  tener 
et  admodum  puer,  defraudatis  amatoribus  aetatis 
tuae  flore,  mulieres  appetis  atque  eas  liberas  et  con- 
nubia  lege  sociata  corrumpis  et  intempestivum  tibi 
nomen  adulteri  vindicas  ?  "  His  et  pluribus  verbis 
compellatum  et  insuper  afFatim  plagis  castigatum 
forinsecus  abicit ;  at  ille  adulterorum  omnium  fortis- 
simus  insperata  potitus  salute,  tamen  nates  Candidas 
illas  noctu  diuque  diruptus,  maerens  profugit :  nee 
setius  pistor  ille  nuntiiim  remisit  uxori  eamque  pro- 
29  tinus  de  sua  proturbavit  domo.  At  ilia  praeter  genu- 
inam  nequitiam  contumelia  etiam,  quamvis  iusta, 
tamen  altius  commota  atque  exasperata  ad  armillum 
revertitur  et  ad  familiares  feminarum  artes  accen- 
ditur,  magnaque  cura  requisitam  veteratricem  quan- 
dam  feminam,  quae  devotionibus  ac  maleficiis  quid- 
vis  efficere  posse  credebatur,  multis  exorat  precibus 
multisque  sutfarcinat  muneribuSj  alterum  de  duobus 
postulans,  vel  rursum  mitigato  conciliari  marito,  vel 
si  id  nequiveritj  certe  larva  vel  aliquo  diro  numine 
immisso  violenter  eius  expugnari  spiritum.  Tune 

1  Adlington's  note  to  the  passage  is  worthy  of  transcription  : 
"  In  like  soi't  do  many  nowadays  go  to  wise  women  which,  are 

led  the  young  man  to  his  chamber,  and  closed 
his  wife  in  another  chamber,  whereby  he  might 
revenge  his  enemy  at  his  pleasure.  On  the  next 
morrow  when  the  sun's  rays  did  first  usher  in 
the  day,  he  called  two  of  the  most  sturdiest  ser- 
vants of  his  house,  who  hoist  up  the  young  man 
while  he  scourged  his  buttocks  well-favouredly  with 
rods  like  a  child.  When  he  had  well  beaten  him  he 
said  :  "  Art  thou  not  ashamed,  thoti  that  art  so 
tender  and  delicate  a  boy,  to  refuse  the  lovers  of 
thine  own  budding  age,  and  to  desire  the  violation 
of  honest  marriages,  and  defame  thyself  with  wicked 
living,  whereby  thou  hast  gotten  the  name  of  an  adul- 
terer ?  "  And  so  he  whipped  him  again  and  chased 
him  out  of  his  house  :  the  young  man,  the  bravest  ot 
all  adulterers,  ran  away,  despairing  of  his  life,  and  did 
nothing  else,  save  only  bewail  his  striped  and  aching 
buttocks.  Soon  after  the  baker  sent  one  to  his  wife 
who  divorced  her  away  in  his  name  :  but  she,  beside 
her  own  natural  mischief  (offended  at  this  contumely, 
though  she  had  worthily  deserved  the  same)  had 
recourse  to  wicked  arts  and  trumpery  1  that  women 
use,  never  ceasing  till  she  had  found  out  an  en- 
chantress, who  (as  it  was  thought)  could  do  what  she 
would  with  her  sorcery  and  conjuration.  The  baker's 
wife  began  to  entreat  her,  promising  that  she  would 
largely  recompense  her,  if  she  could  bring  one  of 
these  two  things  to  pass,  either  to  make  that  her 
husband  might  be  reconciled  to  her  again,  or  else,  if 
he  would  not  agree  thereto,  to  send  some  ghost  or 
devil  into  him  to  dispossess  the  spirit  of  her  husband. 

witches,  when  they  have  lost  silver  spoons,  or  have  their 
cattle  hurt  to  seek  remedy,  but  to  seek  redress  by  such  means 
is  luck  of  faith,  when  they  forsake  God  and  run  for  help  to  tin- 
devil,  with  whom,  as  S.  Augustine  sayeth,  they  shall  be 



Saga  ilia  et  divini  potens  primis  adhuc  armis  faci- 
norosae  disciplinae  suae  velitatur  et  vehementer 
offensum  mariti  flectere  atque  in  amorem  impellere 
conatur  animum.  Quae  res  cum  ei  sequius  ac  rata 
fuerat  proveniret,  indignata  numinibus,  et  praeter 
praemii  destinatum  compendium  contemptione  etiam 
stimulata,  ipsi  iam  miserrimi  mariti  incipit  imminere 
capiti,  umbramque  violenter  peremptae  mulieris  ad 
exitium  eius  instigare. 

30  Sed  forsitan  lector  scrupulosus  reprehendens  nar- 
ratum  meum  sic  argumentaberis  :  "  Unde  autem  tu, 
astutule  asine,  intra  terminos  pistrini  contectus, 
quid  secreto,  ut  affirmas,  mulieres  gesserint  scire 
potuisti  ?  "  Accipe  igitur  quemadmodum  homo 
curiosus  iumenti  faciem  sustinens  cuncta  quae 
in  perniciem  pistoris  mei  gesta  sunt  cognovi. 
Diem  ferme  circa  mediam  repente  intra  pistrinum 
mulier  reatu  miraque  tristitie  deform  is  apparuit, 
flebili  centunculo  semiamicta,  nudis  et  intectis 
pedibus,  lurore  buxeo  macieque  foedata.,  et  dis- 
cerptae  comae  semicanae  sordentes  inspersu  cineris 
pleramque  eius  anteventulae  contegebant  faciem. 
Haec  talis  manu  pistori  clementer  iniecta,  quasi 
quippiam  secreto  collocutura  in  suum  sibi  cubiculum 
deducit  eum  et  adducta  fore  quam  diutissime  de- 
moratur.  Sed  cum  esset  iam  confectum  omne  fru- 
mentum,  quod  inter  manus  opifices  tractaverant, 
nedessarioque  peti  deberet  aliud,  servuli  cubiculum 
propter  sidstantes  dominum  vocabant  operique 
supplementum  postulabant :  atque  ut  illis  saepicule 


Then  the  witch  with  her  abominable  science  began 
at  first  to  conjure  with  the  lighter  arts  of  her  wicked 
practice,  and  to  make  her  ceremonies  to  turn  the 
offended  heart  of  the  baker  to  the  love  of  his  wife  : 
but  all  was  in  vain ;  wherefore  angry  with  her  gods, 
and  considering  on  the  one  side  that  she  could  not 
bring  her  purpose  to  pass,  and  on  the  other  side  the 
loss  of  her  gain  and  the  little  account  that  was  made 
of  her  science,  she  began  to  aim  against  the  life  of 
the  baker,  threatening  to  send  an  ill  spirit  of  a  certain 
woman  that  had  died  violently  to  kill  him  by  mean 
of  her  conjurations. 

But  peradventure  some  scrupulous  reader  may 
demand  me  a  question,  how  I,  being  an  ass,  and  tied 
always  within  the  walls  of  the  mill-house,  could  be 
so  clever  as  to  know  the  secrets  of  these  women : 
learn  then,  I  answer,  notwithstanding  my  shape  of 
an  ass,  yet  having  the  sense  and  knowledge  of  a 
man,  how  I  did  curiously  find  out  and  know  out  such 
injuries  as  were  done  to  my  master.  About  noon 
there  came  suddenly  a  woman  into  the  mill-house, 
very  sorrowful,  clothed  in  wretched  rags,  and  in 
gloomy  garb  like  those  that  are  accused  of  a  crime, 
half  naked  and  with  bare  and  unshod  feet,  meagre, 
exceeding  pale  and  thin,  ill-favoured,  and  her  hair, 
which  was  growing  towards  white,  mixed  with  cinders 
and  scattering  upon  her  face.  This  woman  gently 
took  the  baker  by  the  hand,  and  feigning  that  she 
had  some  secret  matter  to  tell  him,  led  him  into  his 
chamber,  where  they  remained  a  good  space  with 
closed  doors.  But  when  all  the  corn  was  ground 
that  was  ready  to  hand,  and  the  servants  were  com- 
pelled to  call  their  master  to  give  them  more,  they 
called  very  often  at  his  chamber  door,  and  asked  that 
they  might  have  further  matter  for  their  labour. 



et  intervocaliter  clamantibus  nullus  respondit 
dominus,  iam  forem  pulsare  validius  et,  quod  dili- 
gentissime  fuerat  oppessulata,  maius  peiusque  aliquid 
opinantes,  nisu  valido  reducto  vel  diffracto  cardine 
tandem  patefaciunt  aditum.  Nee  uspiam  reperta 
ilia  muliere  vident  e  quodam  tigillo  constrictum  iam- 
que  exanimem  pendere  dominum ;  eumque  nodo 
cervicis  absolutum  detractumque  summis  plangoribus 
summisque  lamentationibus  atque  ultimo  lavacro 
procurant,  peractisque  feralibus  officiis  frequenti  pro- 

31  sequente  comitatu  tradunt  se{)iilturae.     Die  sequenti 
filia  eitis  accurrit  e  proxumo  castello,  in  quod  pridem 
denupserat,  maesta  atque  crines  pendulos  quatiens  et 
interdum  pugnis  obtundens  ubera ;  quae  nullo  quidem 
domus  infortunium  nuntiante  cuncta  cognorat,  sed  ei 
per   quietem    obtulit    sese    flebilis  patris  sui    facies, 
adhuc  nodo  revincta  cervice,  eique  totum  novercae 
scelus  aperuit,  de  adulterio,  de  maleficio,  et  quemad- 
modum  larvatus  ad  inferos  demeasset.     Ea  cum  se 
diutino    plangore    cruciasset,    concursu    familiarium 
cohibita  tandem  pausam  luctui   fecit :  iamque  nono 
die    rite     completis     apud     tumulum     sollemnibus 
familiam    supellectilemque    et    omnia    iumenta   ad 
hereditariam  deducit  auctionem  :  tune  unum  Larem 
varie  dispergit  venditionis  incertae  licentiosa  fortuna. 

Me  denique  ipsum  pauperculus  quidam  hortulanus 
comparat    quinquaginta   nummis,  magno,  ut  aiel>at, 

32  sed  ut  communi  labore  victuin  sibi  quaereret.     Res 
ipsa  mihi  poseere  videtur  ut  huius  quoque  servitiimei 

But  when  no  person  gave  answer  to  their  often  and 
loud  crying,  they  knocked  louder  to  none  effect: 
then  they  began  to  mistrust,  in  so  much  that  with 
great  pushing  they  brake  open  the  door,  which  was 
very  closely  barred ;  but  when  they  were  come  in, 
they  could  not  find  the  woman,  but  only  their  master 
hanging  dead  upon  a  rafter  of  the  chamber.    There- 
upon they  cried  and  lamented  greatly,  and  took  his 
body  from  the  noose ;  and  according  to  the  custom, 
when  they  had  mourned  him  much  and  washed  the 
body,  they  performed  all  the  funeral  rites  and  buried 
him,  much  people  attending.     The  next  morrow  the 
daughter  of  the  baker,  which  was  married  but  a  little 
before  to  one  of  the  next  village,  came  crying  with 
hair  awry  and  beating  her  breast :  not  because  she 
heard  of  the  sad  fortune  of  her  house  by  the  message 
of  any  man,   but   because  her  father's    lamentable 
spirit,  with  a  halter  about  his  neck,  appeared  to  her 
in  the  night,  declaring  the  whole  circumstance  of 
the  matter  ;  of  the  wickedness  of  her  stepmother  and 
her  whoredom,  of  the  witchcraft  and  how  by  en- 
chantment he  was  descended  to  hell.    After  that  she 
had  lamented  a  good  space,  and  was  then  somewhat 
comforted  by  the  servants  of  the   house  and    had 
ceased  therefrom,  and  when  nine  days  were  expired; 
and  all  was  duly  done  at  the  tomb,  as  inheritress  to 
her  father  she  sold  away  all  the  substance  of  the 
house,  both  slaves  and  furniture  and  beasts,  whereby 
the  goods  of  one  household  chanced  by  the  operation 
of  fortune  into  divers  men's  hands. 

There  was  a  poor  gardener  amongst  the  rest,  which 
bought  me  for  the  sum  of  fifty  pence,  which  seemed 
to  him  a  great  price,  but  he  thought  to  gain  it  again 
by  the  common  travail  of  himself  and  me.  The 
matter  requireth  to  tell  likewise,  how  I  was  handled 
2  F  449 


disciplinam  exponam.  Matutino  me  multis  holeribus 
onustum  proxumam  civitatem  deducere  consuerat 
dominus  atque  ibi  venditoribus  tradita  merce  dorsum 
insidens  raeum  sic  hortum  redire.  Ac  dum  fodiens, 
dum  irrigans  ceteroque  incurvus  labore  deservit,  ego 
tantisper  otiosus  placida  quiete  recreabar.  Sed  ecce 
siderum  ordinatis  ambagibus  per  numeros  dierum  ac 
mensuum  remeans  annus,  post  raustulentas  autumni 
delicias  ad  hibernas  Capricorn!  pruinas  deflexerat  et 
assiduis  pluviis  nocturnisque  rorationibus  sub  dio  et 
intecto  conclusus  stabulo  continue  discruciabar  frigore, 
quippe  cum  meus  dominus  prae  nimia  paupertate  ne 
sibi  quidem,  nedum  mihi  posset  stramen  aliquod  vel 
exiguum  tegimen  parare,  sed  frondoso  casulae  con- 
tentus  umbraculo  degeret.  Ad  hoc  matutino  lutum 
nimis  frigidum  gelusque  praeacuta  frusta  nudis 
invadens  pedibus  enitebar,  ac  ne  suetis  saltern  cibariis 
ventrem  meum  replere  poteram ;  namque  et  mihi  et 
ipsi  domino  cena  par  ac  similis,  oppido  tamen  tenuis 
aderat,  lactucae  veteres  et  insuaves  illae,  quae  seminis 
enormi  senecta  ad  instar  scoparum  in  amaram  caenosi 
succus  cariem  exolescunt. 

33  Nocte  quadam  paterfamilias  quidam  de  pago 
proxumo  tenebris  inluniae  caliginis  impeditus  et 
imbre  nimio  madefactus,  atque  ob  id  ab  itinere 
directo  cohibitus,  ad  hortulum  nostrum  iam  fesso 
equo  deverterat  receptusque  comiter  pro  tempore, 
licet  non  delicato,  necessario  tamen  quietis  subsidio, 
remunerari  beniguum  hospitem  cupiens  promittit  ei 
de  praediis  suis  sese  daturum  et  frumenti  et  olivi 


in  his  service.  This  gardener  accustomed  to  drive 
me  every  morning  laden  with  herbs  to  the  next 
village,  and  there,  when  he  had  sold  his  herbs,  he 
would  mount  upon  my  back  and  return  to  the  garden. 
Now  while  he  digged  the  ground,  and  watered  the 
herbs,  and  bent  himself  to  his  other  business,  I  did 
nothing  but  repose  myself  with  great  ease  :  but  when 
the  signs  of  heaven  were  turned  in  their  ordained 
courses,  and  the  year  in  due  order  passed  by  day 
and  by  months  from  the  pleasant  delights  of  the 
autumn  unto  Capricorn,  with  sharp  hail,  rain,  and 
wintry  frosts,  I  had  no  stable,  but  standing  always 
under  a  hedgeside,  beneath  the  unceasing  rain  and 
the  dews  of  night,  was  well  nigh  killed  with  cold ; 
for  my  master  was  so  poor  that  he  had  no  lodging 
for  himself,  much  less  he  had  any  litter  or  place  to 
cover  me  withal ;  but  he  himself  always  lay  under  a 
little  roof,  shadowed  and  covered  with  boughs.  In 
the  morning  when  I  walked,  I  had  no  shoes  to  my 
hoofs  to  pass  upon  the  sharp  ice  and  frosty  mire, 
neither  could  I  fill  my  belly  with  meat  as  I  accus- 
tomed to  do  ;  for  my  master  and  I  supped  together 
and  had  both  one  fare,  and  it  was  very  slender,  since 
we  had  nothing  else  saving  old  and  unsavoury  salads, 
which  were  suffered  to  grow  for  seed,  like  long 
brooms,  and  all  their  sweet  sap  and  juice  had  become 
bitter  and  stinking. 

It  fortuned  on  a  day  that  an  honest  man  of  the 
nextvillage  was  benighted,  and  constrained,  by  reason 
of  the  rain  and  that  it  was  dark  without  moon,  to 
lodge  (his  horse  being  very  weary)  in  our  garden ; 
where  although  he  was  but  meanly  received, yet  served 
well  enough  considering  time  and  necessity.  This 
honest  man,  to  recompense  our  kindly  entertainment, 
promised  to  give  my  master  some  corn,  oil,  and  two 



aliquid  et  amplius  duos  vini  cados.  Nee  moratus 
nxeus  sacculo  et  utribus  vacuis  secum  apportatis 
nudae  spinae  meae  residens  ad  sexagesimum  stadium 
profectionem  comparat.  Eo  iam  confecto  viae  spatio 
pervenimus  ad  praedictos  agros,  ibique  statim  meum 
dominum  comis  hospes  opipari  prandio  participat. 
lamque  iis  poculis  mutuis  altercantibus  mirabile 
prorsus  evenit  ostentum.  Una  de  cetera  cohorte 
gallina  per  mediam  cursitans  aream  clangore  genuino 
velut  ovum  parere  gestiens  personabat.  Earn  suus 
dominus  intuens  "  O  bona  "  inquit  "  Ancilla  et  satis 
fecunda  quae  multo  iam  tempore  cotidianis  nos  partu- 
bus  saginasti !  Nunc  etiam  cogitas,  ut  video,  gustu- 
lum  iiobis  praeparare."  Et  "  Heus  "  inquit  "  Puer, 
calathum  fetui  gallinaceo  destinatum  angulo  solitff 
collocato."  Ita  uti  fuerat  iussum  procurante  puero, 
gallina  consuetae  lecticulae  spreto  cubili  ante  ipsos 
pedes  domini  praematurum  sed  magno  prorsus 
futurum  scrupulo  prodidit  partum  :  non  enim  ovum, 
quod  scimus  illud,  sed  pinnis  et  unguibus  et  oculis  et 
voce  etiam  perfectum  edidit  pullum,  qui  matrem 
34.  suam  coepit  continue  comitari.  Nee  eo  setius  longe 
mains  ostentum,  et  quod  omnes  merito  perhor- 
rescerent,  exoritur  :  sub  ipsa  enim  mensa,  quae  reli- 
quias  prandii  gerebat,  terra  dehiscens  imitus  largis- 
simum  emicuit  sanguinis  fontem  x  ;  hinc  resultantes 
uberrimae  guttae  mensam  cruore  perspergunt. 
Ipsoque  illo  momento,  quo  stupore  defixi  mirantur 
ac  trepidant  divina  praesagia,  concurrit  unus  e  cella 
vinaria  mmtians  omne  vinum,  quod  olim  diffusum 
fuerat,  in  omnibus  doliis  ferventi  calore  et  prorsus 
ut  igne  copioso  subdito  rebullire.  Visae  interea 

1  MSS/ons.  But  an  accusative  is  necessary,  as  Petschenig 
saw,  unless  we  read  dehiscente  and  largissimus,  taking  terra  as 
an  ablative. 



bottles  of  wine  :  therefore  my  master,  not  delaying  the 
matter,  laded  me  with  a  sack  and  empty  bottles,  and 
sat  upon  my  bare  back  and  rode  to  the  town,  which 
was  seven  miles  off.     When  we  came  to  the  hours! 
man's  farm,  he  entertained  and  feasted  my  master 
exceedingly;    and   it   fortuned    while  they  ate   and 
drank    together   in    great   amity,   there   chanced   a 
strange   and    dreadful  case;    for   there    was   a   hen 
which  ran  cackling  about  the  yard,  even  as  though 
she  would  have  laid  an  egg ;  the  good  man  of  the 
house,  perceiving  her,  said  :  "  O  good  and  profitable 
pullet,  that  now  for  so  long  hast  fed  us  every  day 
with  thy  fruit,  thou  seemest  as  though  thou  wouldst 
give  us  some  pittance  for  uur  dinner.    Oh,  boy,  put 
the  pannier  in  the  accustomed  comer  that  the  hen 
may    lay."     Then  the   boy  did  as   his  master  com- 
manded, but    the    hen,   forsaking    her    accustomed 
litter,  came  towards  her  master,  and  laid  at  his  feet 
an  offspring  too  early  indeed,  and  one  that  should 
betoken   great  ill  to  come ;  for  it  was  not  an  egg 
which    every   man   knoweth,  but   a   chicken,    with 
feathers,  claws,  and    eyes,  nay  even   with  a  voice, 
which   incontinently    ran    peeping  after    his    dame. 
By  and   by  happened  a  more  strange   thing  which 
would  cause  any  man  to  abhor  ;  for  under  the  very 
table  whereon  was  the  rest  of  their  meat,  the  ground 
opened,  and  there  appeared  a  great  well  and  fountain 
of  blood,  in  so  much  that  the  drops  thereof  sprinkled 
about    the    table.     At    the    same    time,   while    they 
wondered   at  this  dreadful   sight,    and   feared   that 
which  the  gods  should  presage  thereby,  one  of  the 
servants  came  running  out  of  the   cellar,  and   told 
that  all  the  wine,  which  had  long  before  been  racked 
oft',    was  boiled  out   of  the  vessels,   as  though   there 
had  been  some  great  fire  under.     By  and  by  without 



mustelae  etiam  mortuum  serpentem  forinsecus  mor- 
dicus  attrahentes,  et  cle  ore  pastoricii  canis  virens 
exsiluit  ranula,  ipsumque  canem  qui  proximus  consis- 
tebat  aries  appetitum  unico  morsu  strangulavit.  Haec 
tot  ac  talia  ingenti  pavore  domini  illius  et  familiae 
totius  ad  extremum  stuporem  deiecerant  animos, 
quid  prius  quidve  posterius,  quid  magis  quid  minus, 
numinum  caelestium  leniendis  minis  quot  et  qualibus 
•'55  procuraretur  hostiis.  Adhuc  omnibus  expectatione 
taeterrimae  formidinis  torpidis  accurrit  quidam 
servulus  magnas  et  postremas  domino  illi  fundorum 
clades  annuntians.  Namque  is  adultis  iam  tribus 
liberis  doctrina  instructis  et  verecundia  praeditis 
vivebat  gloriosus.  His  adtilescentibus  erat  cum 
quodam  paupere  modicae  casulae  domino  vetus 
familiaritas :  at  enim  casulae  parvulae  conterminos 
magnos  et  beatos  agros  possidebat  victims  potens  et 
dives  et  iuvenis,  sed  prosapiae  maiorum  gloria  male 
utens  pollensque  factionibus  et  cuncta  facile  faciens 
in  civitate :  hie  hostili  modo  vicini  tennis  incursabat 
pauperiem  pecua  trucidando,  boves  abigendo,  fruges 
adhuc  immaturas  obterendo.  lamque  tota  frugalitate 
spoliatum  ipsis  etiam  glebulis  exterminare  gestiebat 
finiumque  inani  commota  quaestione  terram  totam 
sibi  vindicabat.  Tune  agrestis,  verecundus  alioquin, 
avaritia  divitis  iam  spoliatus,  ut  suo  saltern  sepulchre 
paternum  retiueret  solum,  amicos  plurimos  ad  de- 

the  house  weasels  were  seen  that  drew  with  their 
teeth  a  dead  serpent ;  and  out  of  the  mouth  of  a 
shepherd's  dog  leaped  a  green  frog,  and  immediately 
after  a  ram  that  stood  hard  by  leaped  upon  the  same 
dog  and  strangled  him  with  one  bite.  All  these 
things  that  happened  horribly  astonished  the  good 
man  of  the  house  and  the  residue  that  were  present, 
in  so  much  they  could  not  tell  how  they  stood  01 
what  to  do,  which  first  and  which  last,  which  more 
and  which  less,  or  with  what  or  how  many  sacrifices 
to  appease  the  anger  of  the  gods. 

While  every  man  was  thus  stricken  in  fear  of  some 
hideous  thing  that  should  come  to  pass,  behold  one 
brought  word  to  the  good  man  of  the  house  of  a 
great  and  terrible  mishap.  For  he  had  three  sons 
who  had  been  brought  up  in  good  literature  and 
endued  with  good  manners,  in  whom  he  greatly 
gloried.  Now  they  three  had  great  acquaintance 
and  ancient  amity  with  a  poor  man,  which  was  their 
neighbour  and  dwelled  hard  by  them  in  a  little 
cottage.  And  next  unto  that  little  cottage  dwelled 
another  young  man  very  rich  both  in  lands  and  goods, 
but  using  ill  the  pride  of  his  high  descent,  very 
factious,  and  ruling  himself  in  the  town  according  to 
his  own  will.  This  young  royster  did  mortally  hate 
this  poor  man,  in  so  much  that  he  would  kill  his 
sheep,  steal  his  oxen,  and  spoil  his  corn  and  other 
fruits  before  the  time  of  ripeness ;  yet  was  he  not 
contented  with  this  spoiling  of  his  thrift,  but  he 
burned  to  encroach  upon  the  poor  man's  ground  and 
by  some  empty  quarrel  of  boundaries  claimed  all  his 
heritage  as  his  own.  The  poor  man,  which  was  very 
simple  and  fearful,  seeing  all  his  goods  taken  away 
by  the  avarice  of  the  rich  man,  called  together  and 
assembled  many  of  his  friends  to  shew  them  in  much 



monsti  ationem  finium  trepidans  eximie  corrogarat : 
aderant  inter  alios  ires  illi  fratres  cladibus  amici 
36  quantulum  quantulum  ferentes  auxilium.  Nee  ta- 
men  ille  vesanus  tantillum  praesentia  multorum 
civium  territus  vel  etiam  confusus,  licet  non  rapinis, 
saltem  verbis  temperare  voluit  sed,  illis  clementer 
expostulantibus  fervidosque  eius  mores  blanditiis  per- 
mulcentibus,  repente  stiam  suorumque  carorum  salu- 
tem  quam  sanctissime  adiurans  asseverat  parvi  se 
pendere  tot  mediatorum  praesentiam ;  denique  vici- 
num  ilium  auriculis  per  suos  servulos  sublatum  de 
casula  longissime  statimque  proiectum  iri :  quo  dicto 
insignis  indignatio  totos  audientium  pertemptavit  ani- 
mos.  Tune  unus  e  tribus  fratribus  incunctanter  et 
paulo  liberius  respondit,  frustra  eum  suis  opibus  con- 
fisum  tyrannica  superbia  comminari,  cum  alioquin 
pauperes  etiam  liberali  legum  praesidio  de  insolentia 
locupletium  consueverint  vindicari. 

Quod  oleum  flammae,  quod  sulphur  incendio,  quod 
flagellum  Furiae,  hoc  et  iste  sermo  truculentiae  homi- 
nis  nutrimento  fuit.  lamque  ad  extremam  insaniam 
vecors  suspendium  sese  et  totis  illis  et  ipsis  legibus 
mandare  proclamans,  canes  pastoricios  villaticos,  feros 
atque  immanes,  assuetos  abiecta  per  agros  essitare 
cadavera,  praeterea  etiam  transeuntium  viatorum 
passivis l  morsibus  alumnatos,  laxari  atque  in  eorum 
exitiuminhortatosimmittipraecipit.  Qui  sinuil  signo 

1  Colvius7  ingenious  emendation  for  the  MSS'  passibus. 

fear  the  metes  and  bounds  of  his  land,  to  the  end  he 
might  at  least  have  so  much  ground  of  his  father's 
heritage  as  might  bury  him.  Amongst  whom  he 
found  these  three  brethren  as  friends  to  help  and 
aid  him  as  far  as  they  might  in  his  adversity  and 
tribulation.  Howbeit  the  presence  of  all  these  honest 
citizens  could  in  no  wise  persuade  or  frighten  this 
madman  to  leave  his  power  and  extortion,  and 
though  at  the  first  he  did  shew  temperance  in 
his  tongue,  yet  of  a  sudden,  the  more  they  went 
about  with  gentle  words  to  tell  him  his  faults, 
the  more  would  he  fret  and  fume,  swearing  all  the 
oaths  under  God,  and  pledging  his  own  life  and 
his  dearest,  that  he  little  regarded  the  presence  of 
the  whole  city,  and  incontinently  he  would  command 
his  servants  to  take  the  poor  man  by  the  ears,  and 
carry  him  out  of  his  cottage  and  thrust  him  afar  off. 
This  greatly  offended  all  the  standers-by ;  and  then 
forthwith  one  of  the  brethren  spake  unto  him  some- 
what boldly,  saying:  "It  is  but  a  folly  to  have  such 
affiance  in  your  riches,  and  to  use  your  tyrannous 
pride  to  threaten,  when  as  the  law  is  common  for  the 
poor  alike,  and  a  redress  may  be  had  by  it  to  suppress 
the  insolence  of  the  rich." 

These  words  made  his  harsh  temper  to  burn  more 
than  oil  on  flames,  or  brimstone  in  a  fire,  or  a  Fury's 
scourge  of  whips,  and  he  became  furious  to  madness, 
saying  that  they  should  be  all  hanged  and  their  laws 
too,  before  he  would  be  subject  to  any  person  :  and 
therewithal  he  called  out  his  bandogs  and  great 
mastiffs  that  followed  the  sheep  on  his  farm,  which 
accustomed  to  eat  the  carrion  and  carcasses  of  dead 
beasts  in  the  fields,  and  had  been  trained  to  set  upon 
such  as  passed  by  the  way.  These  he  commanded 
should  be  put  upon  all  the  assistants  to  tear  them  in 



solito  pastorum  incensi  atque  inflammati  sunt,  furiosa 
rabie  conciti  et  latratibus  etiam  absents  horribiles, 
eunt  in  homines  eosque  variis  aggressi  vulneribus 
distrahunt  ac  lacerant,  nee  fugientibus  saltern  com- 
37  pescunt  sed  eo  magis  irritatiores  sequuntur.  Tune 
inter  confertam  trepidae  multitudinis  stragem  e  tri- 
bus  iunior  offenso  lapide  atque  obtunsis  digitis  terrae 
prosternitur,  saevisque  illis  ac  ferocissimis  canibus  in- 
struit  nefariam  dapem :  protenus  enim  nancti  prae- 
dam  iacentem  miserum  ilium  adulescentem  frustatim 
discerpunt.  Atque  ut  eius  letalem  ululatum  cogno- 
vere  ceteri  fratres,  accurrunt  maesti  suppetias,  ob- 
volutisque  lacinia  laevis  manibus  lapidum  crebris 
iactibus  propugnare  fratri  atque  abigere  canes  ag- 
grediuntur.  Nee  tamen  eorum  ferociam  vel  conterrere 
vel  expugnare  potuere,  quippe  cum  miserrimus  adule- 
scens  ultima  voce  prolata,  vindicarent  de  pollutissimo 
divite  mortem  fratris  iunioris,  illico  laniatus  interisset. 
Tune  reliqui  fratres  non  tarn  Hercule  desperata  quam 
ultro  neglecta  sua  salute  contendunt  ad  divitem  atque 
ardentibus  animis  impetuque  vesano  lapidibus  cre- 
bvis  in  eum  velitantur.  At  ille  cruentus  et  multis  ante 
flagitiis  similibus  exercitatus  percussor  iniecta  lancea 
duorum  alterum  per  pectus  medium  transadegit : 
nee  tamen  peremptus  ac  prorsum  exanimatus  adule- 
scens  ille  terrae  concidit ;  nam  telum  transvectum 
atque  ex  maxima  parte  pone  tergum  elapsum  soloque 
nisus  violentia  defixum  rigore  librato  suspenderat 
corpus.  Sed  et  quidam  de  servulis  procerus  et 

pieces ;  and  as  soon  as  they  heard  the  accustomed 
hiss  of  their  masters  the  shepherds,  ran  fiercely  upon 
them,  roused  to  madness,  and  barking  very  horridly, 
invading  them  on  every  side,  wounding  and  tearing 
them,  and  not  sparing  even  them  that  sought  to  fly, 
in  so  much  that  the  more  they  fled  to  escape  away, 
the  more  cruel  and  terrible  were  the  dogs.     It  for- 
tuned amongst  all  this  fearful  company,  that  in  run- 
ning the  youngest  of  the  three  brethren  stumbled  at 
a  stone,  and  bruising  his  toes  fell  down  to  the  ground 
to  be  a  prey  to  these  wild  and  furious  dogs,  and  they 
came  upon  him  and  tare  him  in  pieces  with  their 
teeth,  whereby  he  cried  out  bitterly  :  his  other  two 
brethren,  hearing  his  lamentable  voice,  ran  towards 
him  to  help  him,  casting  their  cloaks  about  their  left 
arms,  and  took  up  stones  to  defend  their  brother  and 
chase  away  the  dogs.     But  all  was  in  vain,  for  they 
could  not  make  to  cease  nor  drive  away  the  fierce 
beasts,    but   they   must  see   their  brother  dismem- 
bered in  every  part  of  his  body ;  who,  lying  at  the 
very  point  of  death,  desired  his  brethren  to  revenge 
his  death  against  the  cruel  tyrant,  and  therewithal 
he   gave    up  the  ghost.     The  other  two  brethren, 
perceiving   so  great    a   murder,    did    not  only   de- 
spair of  their  only  safety,  but  neglected  their  own 
lives    and    madly   dressed    themselves   against   the 
tyrant,    and    threw   a   great   number    of  stones   at 
him  ;  but  the  bloody  thief,  exercised  to  such  and 
like  mischiefs,  took  a  spear  and  thrust  one  of  them 
clean  through  the  body.     Howbeit,  although  utterly 
destroyed,  he  fell  not  down  to  the  ground  :  for  the 
spear  that  came  out  at  his  back  ran  into  the  earth 
with  the  force  of  the  thrust  and  sustained  him  up 
quivering  in  the  air.      By  and  by  came  one  of  this 
tyrant's  servants,  the  most  sturdiest  of  the  rest,  to 



validus  sicario  illi  ferens  auxilium  lapide  contorto 
tertii  illius  iuvenis  dexterum  brachium  longo  iactu 
petierat,  sed  impetu  casso  per  extremes  digitos  trans- 
currens  lapis  contra  omnium  opinionem  deciderat 
38  innoxius.  Nonnullam  tamen  sagacissimo  iuveni  pro- 
ventus  humanior  vindictae  speculam  subministravit : 
ficta  namque  manus  suae  debilitate  sic  crudelissimum 
iuvenem  compellat  :  "  Fruere  exitio  totius  nostrae 
familiae  et  sanguine  trium  fratrum  insatiabilem  tuam 
crudelitatem  pasce,  et  de  prostratis  tuis  civibus 
gloriose  triumpha,  dum  scias,  licet  private  suis  pos- 
sessionibus  paupere  fines  usque  et  usque  protermina- 
veris,  habiturum  te  tamen  vicinum  aliquem.  Nam 
haec  etiam  dextera,  quae  tuum  prorsus  amputasset 
caput,  iniquitate  fati  contusa  decidit."  Quo  sermone, 
alioquin  exasperatus,  furiosus  latro  rapto  gladio  sua 
miserrimum  iuvenem  manu  perempturus  invadit 
avidus.  Nee  tamen  sui  molliorem  provocarat,  quippe 
insperato  et  longe  contra  eius  opinionem  resistens 
iuvenis  complexu  fortissimo  arripit  eius  dexteram, 
magnoque  nisu  ferro  librato  multis  et  crebris  ictibus 
impuram  elidit  divitis  animam,  et  ut  accurrentium 
etiam  familiarium  manu  se  liberaret,  confestim  adhuc 
inimici  sanguine  delibuto  mucrone  gulam  sibi  prorsus 
exsecuit.  Haec  erant  quae  prodigiosa  praesaga- 
verant  ostenta,  haec  quae  miserrimo  domino  fuerant 
nuntiata.  Nee  ullum  verbum  ac  ne  taciturn  quidem 

help  his  master ;  and  at  his  first  coming,  he  took  up  a 
stone  and  threw  it  from  afar  at  the  third  brother,  and 
struck  his  left  arm,  but  by  reason  the  stone  ran  i>\- 
the  ends  of  his  fingers  it  fell  to  the  ground  and  did 
not  hurt  him,  which  chanced  otherwise  than  all 
men's  expectation  was.  Then  did  this  fortunate 
chance  give  the  young  man,  that  was  very  wise,  a 
hope  for  vengeance  ;  for  he  feigned  that  his  arm  was 
greatly  wounded,  and  spake  these  words  unto  the 
cruel  bloodsucker  :  "  Now  mayst  thou,  thou  wretch, 
triumph  upon  the  destruction  of  all  our  family  ;  now 
mayst  thou  feed  thy  insatiable  cruelty  with  the  blood 
of  three  brethren  ;  now  mayst  thou  rejoice  at  the  fall 
of  thy  fellow-citizens  :  yet  think  not  but  that  how  far 
soever  thou  dost  remove  and  extend  the  bounds  of  thy 
land  by  depriving  of  poor  men,  thou  shalt  still  have 
some  neighbour  :  but  how  greatly  am  I  sorry  in  that  by 
the  injustice  of  fate  I  have  lost  mine  arm  wherewithal 
I  minded  to  cut  off  thy  head."  When  he  had  spoken 
these  words,  the  furious  thief  was  the  more  enraged 
and  drew  out  his  dagger,  and  running  upon  the  young 
man  thought  verily  to  have  slain  him  :  but  it  chanced 
that  he  had  attacked  one  no  whit  weaker  than  he, 
for  the  young  man  resisted  him  stoutly  beyond  all 
his  expectation,  and  buckling  together  by  violence 
seized  his  right  hand  :  which  done,  he  poised  the 
weapon,  and  oft  striking  made  the  rich  thief  to 
give  up  his  guilty  ghost,  and  to  the  intent  the  young 
man  would  escape  the  hands  of  the  servants,  which 
came  running  to  assist  their  master,  with  the  same 
dagger  that  dripped  with  his  enemy's  blood  he  cut 
his  own  throat.  These  things  were  signified  by  the 
strange  and  dreadful  wonders  which  fortuned  in  the 
house  of  the  wretched  man,  who,  after  he  had  heard 
these  sorrowful  tidings,  could  in  nowise  even  siK  nth 



fletum  tot  malis  circumventus  senex  quivit  emittere, 
sed  arrepto  ferro,  quo  commodum  inter  suos  epulones 
caseurn  atque  alias  prandii  partes  diviserat,  ipse  quo- 
que  ad  instar  infelicissimi  sui  filii  iugulum  sibi  multis 
ictibus  contrucidat,  quoad  super  mensam  cernulus 
corruens  portentuosi  cruoris  maculas  novi  sanguinis 
fluvio  proluit. 

39  Ad  istum  modum  puncto  brevissimo  dilapsae 
domus  fortunam  hortulanus  ille  miseratus  suosque 
casus  graviter  ingemescens,  deprensis  pro  prandio 
lacrimis  vacuasque  manus  complodens  saepicule,  pro- 
tinus  inscenso  me  retro,  quam  veneramus,  viam  capes- 
sit.  Nee  innoxius  ei  saltern  regressus  evenit :  nam 
quidam  procerus  et,  ut  indicabat  habitus  atque  habi- 
tudo,  miles  e  legione,  factus  nobis  obvius,  superbo 
atque  arroganti  sermone  percontatur  quorsum  vacuum 
duceret  asinum :  at  meus  adhuc  maerore  permixtus 
et  alias  Latini  sermonis  ignarus,  tacitus  praeteribat. 
Nee  miles  ille  familiarem  cohibere  quivit  insolentiam 
sed  indignatus  silentio  eius  ut  convicio,  viti  quam 
tenebat  obtundens  eum  dorso  meo  proturbat.  Tune 
hortulanus  supplicue  respondit  sermonis  ignorantia 
se  quid  ille  diceret  scire  non  posse :  ergo  igitur 
Graece  subiciens  miles  "  Ubi "  inquit  "Ducis 
asinum  istum  ? "  Respondit  hortulanus  petere  se 
civitatem  proxumam.  "  Sed  mihi "  inquit  "  Operae 
eius  opus  est ;  nam  de  proxumo  castello  sarcinas 
praesidis  nostri  cum  ceteris  iumentis  debet  adve- 
here,"  et  iniecta  statim  manu  loro  me,  quo  duce- 

weep,  so  far  was  he  stricken  into  dolour,  but  pre- 
sently taking  the  knife  -wherewith  he  had  but  now 
divided  the  cheese  and  other  meat  for  his  guests,  he 
cut  his  own  throat  with  many  blows  like  his  most 
unhappy  son,  in  such  sort  that  he  fell  head  foremost 
upon  the  board  and  washed  away  with  the  streams 
of  his  blood  in  most  miserable  manner  those  pro- 
digious drops  which  had  before  fallen  thereon. 

Hereby  was  my  master  the  gardener  deprived  of 
his  hope,  and  pitying  very  greatly  the  evil  fortune  of 
the  house,  which  in  a  brief  moment  of  time  had  thus 
fallen  in  ruins,  and  getting  instead  of  his  dinner  the 
watery  tears  of  his  eyes,  and  clapping  oft-times 
together  his  empty  hands,  mounted  upon  my  back, 
and  so  we  went  homeward  the  same  way  as  we  came. 
Yet  was  our  return  not  free  from  harm :  for  as  we 
passed  by  the  way  we  met  with  a  tall  soldier  (for  so 
his  habit  and  countenance  declared)  which  was  a 
legionary,  who  with  proud  and  arrogant  words  spake 
to  my  master  in  this  sort :  "  Whither  lead  you  this 
ass  unladen  ?  "  My  master,  still  somewhat  astonished 
and  fearful  at  the  strange  sights  which  he  saw 
before,  and  ignorant  of  the  Latin  tongue,  rode  on 
and  spak*e  never  a  word.  The  soldier,  unable  to 
refrain  his  proper  insolence  and  offended  at  his 
silence  as  it  were  an  insult,  struck  him  with  a  vine- 
stick  which  he  held  on  the  shoulders,  and  thrust 
him  from  my  back.  Then  my  master  gently  made 
answer  that  he  knew  not  his  tongue  and  so  under- 
stood not  what  he  said ;  whereat  the  soldier  angrily 
demanded  again,  but  in  Greek,  whither  he  rode  with 
his  ass:  "Marry,"  quoth  he,  "To  the  next  city." 
"  But  I,"  quoth  the  soldier,  •'  Have  need  of  his  help, 
to  carry  the  trusses  of  our  captain  with  the  other 
beasts  from  yonder  castle";  and  therewithal  he 



bar,  arreptum  incipit  trahere.  Sed  hortulanus  prioris 
plagae  vulnere  prolapsum  capite  sanguinem  deter- 
gens  rursus  deprecatur  civilius  atque  mansuetius 
versari  commilitonem,  idque  per  spes  prosperas  eius 
orabat  adiurans.  "  Nam  et  hie  ipse  "  aiebat  "  Iners 
asellus  et  nihilo  minus  morbo  detestabili  caducus 
vix  etiam  paucos  holerum  manipulos  de  proxumo 
hortulo  solet  anhelitu  languido  fatigatus  subvehere. 
nedum  ut  rebus  amplioribus  idoneus  videatur  gerulus." 
40  Sed  ubi  nullis  precibus  mitigari  militem  magisque  in 
suam  perniciem  advertit  efferari,  iamque  inversa  vite 
de  vastiore  nodulo  cerebrum  suum  diffindere,  currit 
ad  extrema  subsidia,  simulansque  e  re  ad  commo- 
vendam  miserationem  genua  eius  velle  contingere, 
summissus  atque  incurvatus,  arreptis  eius  utrisque 
pedibus  sublimem  elatum  terrae  graviter  applodit,  et 
statim  qua  pugnis,  qua  cubitis,  qua  morsibus,  etiam  de 
via  lapide  correpto  totam  faciem  manusque  eius  et 
latera  converberat.  Nee  ille  ut  primum  humi  supina- 
tus  est,  vel  repugnare  vel  omnino  munire  se  potuit 
sed  plane'  identidem  comminabatur,  si  surrexisset, 
sese  concisurum  eum  machaera  sua  frustatim.  Quo 
sermone  eius  commonefactus  hortulanus  eripit  ei 
spatham  eaque  longissime  abiecta  rursum  saevioribus 
eum  plagis  aggreditur:  nee  ille  prostratus  et  prae- 
ventus  vulneribus  ullum  repperire  saluti  quiens  sub- 
sidium,  quod  solum  restabat,  simulat  sese  mortuum. 
Tune  spatham  illam  secum  asportans  hortulanus 
inscenso  me  concito  gradu  recta  festinat  ad  civitatem, 
nee  hortulum  suum  saltern  curans  invisere,  ad  quem- 
piam  sibi  devertit  familiarem,  cunctisque  narratis 
deprecatur  periclitanti  sibi  ferret  auxilium  seque  cum 

took  me  by  the  halter,  and  would  violently  have 
taken  me  away  :  but  my  master,  wiping  away  from 
his  head  the  blood  of  the  blow  which  he  received  of 
the  soldier,  desired  him  gently  and  civilly  to  take 
some  pity  upon  him,  and  to  let'  him  depart  with  his 
own,  conjuring  him  by  all  that  he  hoped  of  good 
fortune,  and  affirming  that  his  slow  ass,  well  nigh 
dead  with  sickness,  could  scarce  carry  a  few  handfuls 
of  herbs  from  his  garden  hard  by,  being  very  scant  of 
breath ;  much  less  he  was  able  to  bear  any  greater 
trusses.  But  when  he  saw  the  soldier  would  in  no 
wise  be  entreated,  but  was  the  more  bent  on  his 
destruction,  and  ready  with  his  staff  to  cleave  my 
master's  head  with  its  thicker  part,  being  desperate 
he  fell  down  grovelling  at  his  feet,  under  colour  to 
touch  his  knees  and  move  him  to  some  pity;  but 
when  he  saw  his  time,  he  took  the  soldier  by  the 
legs  and  cast  him  upon  the  ground :  then  straight- 
way he  buffeted  him,  thumped  him,  bit  him,  and  took 
a  stone  and  beat  his  face  and  his  sides,  so  that  he, 
being  first  laid  along  the  ground,  could  not  turn  or 
defend  himself,  but  only  threaten  that  if  ever  he 
rose  he  would  chop  him  in  pieces.  The  gardener, 
when  he  heard  him  say  so,  was  advised  and  drew 
out  his  sword  which  he  had  by  his  side,  and  when  he 
had  thrown  it  far  away,  he  knocked  and  beat  him 
more  cruelly  than  he  did  before,  in  so  much  that  thr 
soldier  as  he  lay  all  hurt  with  wounds  could  not  tell 
by  what  means  to  save  himself,  but  only  by  feigning 
he  was  dead.  Then  my  master  took  the  sword  and 
mounted  upon  my  back,  riding  straight  in  all  haste 
to  the  next  village ;  but  he  had  no  regard  to  go  to 
his  garden,  and  when  he  came  thither,  he  turned 
into  one  of  his  friends'  house  and  declared  all  the 
whole  matter,  desiring  him  to  save  his  life,  and  to 
2c  465 


suo  sibi  asino  tantisper  occultaret,  quoad  celatus 
spatio  bidui  triduive  capitalem  causam  evaderet. 
Nee  oblitus  ille  veteris  amicitiae  prompte  suscipit, 
meque  per  scalas  complicitis  pedibus  in  superius 
cenaculum  attracto,  hortulanus  deorsus  in  ipsa  taber- 
nacula  derepit  in  quandam  cistulam  et  superingesto 
delitescit  orificio. 

41  At  miles  ille,  ut  postea  didici,  tandem  velut 
emersus  gravi  crapula,  nutabundus  tamen  et  tot 
plagarum  dolore  saucius  baculoque  se  vix  sustinens 
civitatem  adventat,  confususque  de  impotentia  deque 
inertia  suaquicquam  ad  quemquam  referre  popularium, 
sed  tacitus  iniuriam  devorans,  quosdam  commilitones 
nanctus,  is  tantum  clades  enarrat  suas.  Placuit  ut 
ipse  quidem  contubernio  se  tantisper  absconderet 
(nam  praeter  propriam  contumeliam  militaris  etiam 
sacramenti  genium  ob  amissam  spatham  verebatur), 
ipsi  autem  signis  nostris  enotatis  investigationi 
vindictaeque  sedulam  darent  operam :  nee  defuit 
vicinus  perfidus  qui  nos  illico  occultari  nuntiaret. 
Turn  commilitoaes  accersitis  magistratibus  menti- 
untur  sese  multi  pretii  vasculum  argenteum  prae- 
sidis  in  via  perdidisse,  idque  hortulanum  quendam 
repperisse  nee  velle  restituere,  sed  apud  familiarem 
quendam  sibi  delitescere.  Tune  magistratus  et  danmo 

hide  himself  and  his  ass  awhile  in  some  secret  place, 
that  he  might  be  hid  for  the  space  of  two  or  three 
days,  until  such  time  as  all  danger  were  past.  Then 
his  friend,  not  forgetting  the  ancient  amity  between 
them,  entertained  him  willingly,  and  tying  my  legs 
drew  me  up  a.  pair  of  stairs  into  a  chamber,  while 
my  master,  remaining  in  the  shop,  crept  into  a 
chest  and  lay  hidden  there  with  the  cover  closed 

The  soldier  (as  1  afterwards  learned)  rose  up  at 
last  as  one  awakened  from  a  drunken  sleep,  but  he 
could  scarce  go  by  reason  of  his  wounds,  howbeit, 
at  length,  by  little  and  little,  through  aid  of  his  staff, 
he  came  to  the  town ;  but  he  would  not  declare  the 
matter  to  any  person,  nor  complain  to  any  justice, 
but  inwardly  digested  his  injury,  lest  he  should  be 
accused  of  cowardice  or  dastardness.  Yet  in  the  end 
he  told  some  of  his  companions  of  all  the  matter  that 
happened  ;  but  they  advised  him  that  he  should 
remain  for  awhile  closed  in  some  secret  place, think- 
ing that  beside  the  injury  which  he  had  received, 
he  should  be  accused  of  the  breach  of  his  faith  and 
soldier's  oath,  by  reason  of  the  loss  of  his  sword,1 
and  that  they  should  diligently  learn  the  signs  and 
appearance  of  my  master  and  me  to  search  him  out 
and  take  vengeance  upon  him.  At  last,  there  was  an 
unfaithful  neighbour  that  told  them  where  we  were  : 
then  incontinently  the  soldiers  went  to  the  justice, 
declaring  that  they  had  lost  by  the  way  a  silver  goblet 
of  their  captain's,  very  precious,  and  that  a  gardener 
had  found  it,  who,  refusing  to  render  up  the  goblet, 
was  hidden  in  one  of  his  friends'  house.  By  and  by 
the  magistrate,  understanding  the  loss  of  the  captain, 
1  A  soldier's  loss  of  his  sword  was  considered  equal  to 
desertion,  and  punished  with  equal  severity. 



et  praesidis  nomine  cognito  veniunt  ad  deversorii 
nostri  fores  clavaque  voce  denuntiant  hospiti  iiostro 
noSj  quos  occultaret  aj)ud  se  certo  certius,  dedere 
potius  quam  discrimen  proprii  subiret  capitis.  Nee 
ille  tantillum  conterritus  salutique  studens  eius  quem 
in  suam  receperat  fidem,  quicquam  de  nobis  fa- 
tetur  ac  diebus  plusculis  nee  vidisse  quidem  ilium 
hortulanum  contendit :  contra  commilitones  ibi  nee 
uspiam  ilium  delitescere  adiurantes  genium  principis 
contendebant.  Postremum  magistratibus  placuit 
obstinate  denegantem  scrutinio  detegere  ;  immissis 
itaque  lictoribus  ceterisque  publicis  ministeriis  angu- 
latim  cuncta  sedulo  perlustrari  iubent :  nee  quisquam 
mortalium  ac  ne  ipse  quidem  asinus  intra  limen  com- 
42  parere  nuntiatur.  Tune  gliscit  violentior  utrimque- 
secus  contentio :  militum  pro  comperto  de  nobis  as- 
severantium  fidemque  Caesaris  identidem  imploran- 
tium,  at  illius  negantis  assidueque  deum  numen 
obtestantis.  Qua  contentione  et  clamoso  strepitu 
cognito,  curiosus  alioquin  et  inquieti  procacitate 
praeditus  asinus,  dum  obliquata  cervice  per  quandam 
fenestrulam  quidnam  sibi  vellet  tumultus  ille  pro- 
spicere  gestio,  unus  e  commilitonibus  casu  fortuito 
collimatis  oculis  ad  umbram  meam  cunctos  testatur 
incoram.  Magnus  denique  continue  clamor  exortus 
est,  et  emensis  protenus  scalis  iniecta  manu  quidam 
me  velut  captivum  detrahunt.  lamque^omni  sublata 
cunctatione  scrupulosius  contemplantes  singula,  cista 
etiam  ilia  revelata  repertum  productumque  et  oblatum 
magistratibus  miserum  hortulanum,  poenas  scilicet 



and  who  he  was,  came  to  the  doors  where  we  were, 
and  in  a  loud  voice  exhorted  our  host  that  it  were 
better  to  deliver  up  my  master  than  to  incur  pain 
of  death ;  for  most  certainly  he  was  hiding  us. 
Howbeit,  these  threatenings  could  not  enforce  him 
to  confess  that  he  was  within  his  doors,  and  he  was 
nothing  afraid,  but  by  reason  of  his  faithful  promise, 
and  for  the  safeguard  of  his  friend,  he  said  that  he 
knew  naught  of  us,  nor  saw  he  the  gardener  a  great 
while.  The  soldiers  said  contrary,  swearing  by  the 
deity  01  the  Emperor  that  he  lay  there,  and  nowhere 
else.  Whereby,  to  know  the  verity  of  the  matter, 
the  magistrates  commanded  their  Serjeants  and 
ministers  to  search  every  corner  of  the  house ;  but 
there  they  could  find  nobody,  neither  gardener  nor 
ass.  Then  was  there  a  great  contention  between 
the  soldiers  and  our  host,  for  they  said  we  were 
within  the  house,  calling  often  upon  Caesar  in  their 
oaths ;  and  he  said  no,  and  swore  much  and  often  by 
all  the  gods  to  the  same  intent.  But  I,  that  was  an 
ass  very  curious  and  restless  in  my  nature,  when  I 
heard  so  great  a  noise  craned  my  neck  and  put  my 
head  out  of  a  little  window  to  learn  what  the  stir 
and  tumult  did  signify.  It  fortuned  that  one  of  the 
soldiers,  spying  about,  perceived  my  shadow,  where- 
upon he  began  to  cry,  saying  that  he  had  certainly 
seen  me :  then  they  were  all  glad  and  a  great 
shouting  arose,  and  they  brought  a  ladder  and  came 
up  into  the  chamber  and  pulled  me  down  like  a 
prisoner  ;  and  when  they  had  found  me,  they  doubted 
nothing  of  the  gardener,  but  seeking  alxmt  more 
narrowly,  at  length  they  found  him  couched  in  a 
chest.  And  so  they  brought  out  the  jx>or  gardener 
to  the  justices,  who  was  committed  immediately  to 
prison,  in  order  that  he  might  suffer  the  pain  of 



capite  pensurnm  in  j)ublicum  declucunt  carcerem, 
summoque  risu  meum  prospectum  cavillari  non  de- 
sinunt.  Unde  etaim  de  prospectu  et  umbra  asini 
natum  est  frequens  proverbium. 

i  Apuleius  has  here  combined  two  Greek  proverbs  of  con- 
siderably greater  antiquity  than  his  story,  t£  6vov  ira/ja/ctffewj 
and  virtp  6vov  <r/u£s.  The  first  is  variously  explained.  There 
is  a  tale  that  a  donkey  broke  some  vessels  in  a  potter's  shop 
by  going  to  look  out  of  the  window;  the  potter  sued  its 
master  for  damages,  and  when  asked  by  the  magistrate  the 
subject  of  his  complaint,  answered  "  of  the  peeping  of  an 



death  ;  but  they  could  never  forbear  laughing  and 
jesting  how  I  looked  out  from  my  window  :  from 
which,  and  from  my  shadow,  is  risen  the  common 
proverb  of  the  peeping  and  shadow  of  an  ass.1 

ass";  or  it  has  been  explained  that,  frightened  by  an  ass 
looking  on,  some  game-birds  flew  suddenly  away  and  avoided 
or  broke  a  fowler's  nets.  The  other  proverb  is  derived  from 
a  story  that  a  man  who  hired  an  ags  lay  down  to  sleep  in  its 
shadow  on  a  hot  day,  and  the  animal's  master  objected  that 
he  had  hired  only  the  ass  and  not  its  shadow ;  and  the  re- 
sulting lawsuit  brought  into  proverbial  use  the  expression 
"about  an  ass's  shadow"  to  describe  a  dispute  about  a  wholly 
trivial  matter. 



1  DIE  sequenti  meus  quitlem  dominus  hortulanus  quid 
egerit    nescio,    me    tamen     miles    ille,    qui    propter 
eximiam  impotentiam  pulcherrime  vapularat,  ab  illo 
praesepio  nullo  equidem  contradicente  deductum  al>- 
ducit  atque  a  suo  contubernio  (hoc  enim  mihi  vide- 
batur)  sarcinis  propriis  onustum  et  prorsum  exornatum 
armatumque  militariter  producit  ad  viam.     Nam  et 
galeam    gerebam    nitore    praemicantem    et   scutum 
longius  relucens  sed  etiam  lanceam  longissimo  hastili 
conspicuam,  quae  scilicet  non  disciplinae  tune  quidem 
causa    sed    propter    terrendos    miseros   viatores   in 
summo   atque    edito    sarcinarum    cumulo   ad    instar 
exercitus  sedulo  composuerat.     Confecta   campestri 
nee  adeo  difficili   via  ad   quandam  civitatulam  per- 
venimus,    nee    in    stabulo    sed    in    domo    cuiusdam 
decurionis  devertimus,   statimque    me    commendato 
cuidam    servulo    ipse    ad    praepositum     suum,    qui 
mille  armatorum   ducatum  sustinebat,  sollicite  pro- 

2  Post  dies  plusculos  ibidem  dissignatum  scelestum 
ac  nefarium  facinus  memini,  sed  ut  vos  etiam  lega- 
tis,  ad  librum    profero.     Dominus  aedium    habebat 
iuvenem  filium  probe  litteratum  atque  ob  id  conse- 
quenter   pietate,   modestia    praecipuum,    quem    tibi 


THE  next  day  how  my  master  the  gardener  sped  I 
know  not,  but  the  gentle  soldier,  who  had  been  so  well 
beaten  for  his  exceeding  cowardice,  led  me  from  my 
manger  to  his  lodging  (as  it  seemed  to  me)  without 
the  contradiction  of  any  man.  There  he  laded  me 
well,  and  garnished  my  body  for  the  way  like  an  ass 
of  arms.  For  on  the  one  side  I  bare  a  helmet  that 
shined  exceedingly ;  on  the  other  side  a  target  that 
glittered  more  a  thousandfold  ;  and  on  the  top  of  my 
burden  he  had  put  a  long  spear.  Now  these  things  la- 
placed  thus  gallantly,  not  because  such  was  the  rule 
of  arms,  but  to  the  end  he  might  make  fear  those 
which  passed  by,  when  they  saw  such  a  similitude  of 
war  piled  upon  the  heap  of  baggage  When  we  had 
gone  a  good  part  of  our  journey,  over  the  plain  ami 
easy  fields,  we  fortuned  to  come  to  a  little  town, 
where  we  lodged,  not  at  an  inn,  but  at  a  certain 
corporal's  house.  And  there  the  soldier  took  me  to  one 
of  the  servants,  M'hile  he  himself  went  carefully  towards 
his  captain,  who  had  the  charge  of  a  thousand  men. 
When  we  had  remained  there  a  few  days,  I 
understood  of  a  wicked  and  mischievous  deed 
committed  there,  which  I  have  put  in  writing,  to 
the  end  you  may  know  the  same.  The  master 
of  the  house  had  a  young  son  instructed  in  good 
literature,  and  therefore  endowed  with  virtuous 
manners,  but  especially  with  shamefastness,  such 
a  one  as  you  would  desire  to  have  the  like.  Now 



quoque  provenisse  cuperes  vel  talem.  Hunts  matre 
multo  ante  defuncta,  rursum  matriinoniiim  sibi  repara- 
verat,  ductaque  alia  filium  procreaverat  alium,  qui 
adaequeiam  duodecimum  annumaetatis  supercesserat. 
Sed  noverca  forma  magis  quam  moribus  in  domo  mariti 
praepollens,  seu  naturaliter  impudica  seu  fato  ad  ex- 
tremum  impulsa  flagitium,  oculos  ad  privignum 
adiecit :  iam  ergo,  lector  optime,  scito  te  tragoediam, 
non  fabulam  legere,  et  a  socco  ad  cothurnum  ascen- 
dere.  Sed  mulier  ilia  quamdiu  primis  elementis 
Cupido  parvulus  nutriebatur,  imbecillis  adhuc  eius 
viribus  facile  ruborem  tenuem  deprimens  silentio 
resistebat :  at  ubi,  completis  igne  vesano  totis  prae- 
cordiis,  immodice  bacchatus  Amor  exaestuabat, 
saevienti  deo  iam  succubuit,  et  languore  simulate 
vulnus  animi  mentitur  in  corporis  valetudine.  Iam 
cetera  salutis  vultusque  detrimenta  et  aegris  et 
amantibus  examussim  convenire  nemo  qui  nesciat  : 
pallor  deformis,  marcentes  oculi,  lassa  genua,  quies 
turbida  et  suspiritus  cruciatus  tarditate  vehementior  : 
crederes  et  illam  fluctuare  tantum  vaporibus  febrium. 
nisi  quod  et  flebat.  Heu  medicorum  ignarae  mentes  ! 
Quid  venae  pulsus,  quid  caloris  intemperantia,  quid 
fatigatus  anhelitus  et  utrimquesecus  iactatae  crebriter 
laterum  mutuae  vicissitudines  ?  Dii  boni  !  Quam 
facilis  licet  non  artifici  medico,  cuivis  tamen  docto 
Veneriae  cupidinis  comprehensio,  cum  videas  aliquem 


his  mother  died  a  long  time  before,  ;md  then 
his  father  married  a  new  wife,  and  had  another 
child,  that  was  now  of  the  full  age  of  twelve  yrars. 
This  stepdame  was  more  excellent  in  beauty  than 
honesty  in  her  husband's  house;  for  she  loved  this 
young  man  her  son-in-law,  either  because  she  was 
unchaste  by  nature,  or  because  she  was  enforced  In- 
flate to  commit  so  great  a  mischief.  Gentle  reader, 
thou  shalt  not  read  of  a  fable,  but  rather  a  tragedy, 
and  must  here  change  from  sock  to  buskin.1  This 
woman,  when  little  Cupid  first  began  to  do  his  work 
in  her  heart,  could  easily  resist  his  weak  strength, 
and  pressed  down  in  silence  her  desire  and  inordinate 
appetite,  by  reason  of  shame  and  fear ;  but  after  that 
Love  compassed  and  burned  with  his  mad  fire  every 
part  of  her  breast,  she  was  compelled  to  yield  unto 
this  raging  Cupid,  and  under  colour  of  disease  and 
infirmity  of  her  body  to  conceal  the  wound  of  her 
restless  mind.  Every  man  knoweth  well  the  signs 
and  tokens  of  love,  "and  how  that  sickness  is  con- 
venient to  the  same,  working  upon  health  and 
countenance;  her  countenance  was  pale,  her  eyes 
sorrowful,  her  knees  weak,  her  rest  disturbed,  and 
she  would  sigh  deeply  by  reason  of  her  slow  tonm-nt  ; 
there  was  no  comfort  in  her,  but  continual  weeping 
and  sobbing,  in  so  much  you  would  have  thought 
that  she  had  some  spice  of  an  ague,  saving  that  she 
wept  unreasonably.  The  physicians  knew  not  her 
disease  2  when  they  felt  the  beating  of  h.-r  veins,  the 
intemperance  of  her  heat,  the  sobbing  sighs,  and  her 
often  tossing  on  every  side;  no,  no,  the  cunning 
physicians  knew  it  not,  but  a  scholar  of  Venus  court 

1  The   soccus  was  the   low  shoe  of  the  comic  actor  ;  the 
cothurnus,  the  high  boot  of  the  tragedian. 

2  CD  Aen  IV  65 :  "  Heu  vaturn  ignarae  mentes  I 



S  sine  corporis  calore  flagrantem.  Ergo  igitur  ini- 
patientia  furoris  altius  agitata  diutinum  rupit  silen- 
tium  et  ad  se  vocari  praecipit  filium  :  quod  nomen 
in  eo,  si  posset,  ne  ruboris  admoneretur,  libenter 
eraderet.  Nee  adulescens  aegrae  parentis  moratus 
imperiurn,  senili  tristitie  striatam  gerens  frontem 
cubiculum  petit,  uxori  patris  matrique  fratris  utcum- 
que  debitum  sistens  obsequium.  Sed  ilia  cruciabili 
silentio  diutissime  fatigata,  et  ut  in  quodam  vado 
dubitationis  haerens,  omne  verbum  quod  praesenti 
sermoni  putabat  aptissimum  rursum  improbans, 
nutante  etiam  nunc  pudore,  unde  potissimum  caperet 
exordium  decunctatur.  At  iuvenis  nihil  etiam  tune 
sequius  suspicatus,  summisso  vultu  rogat  ultro  prae- 
sentes  causas  aegritudinis.  Tune  ilia  nancta  soli- 
tudinis  damnosam  ocoasionem,  prorumpit  in  audaciam, 
et  ubertim  allacrimans  laciniaque  contegens  faciein 
voce  trepida  sic  eum  breviter  affatur :  "  Causa  omnis 
et  origo  praesentis  doloris  et  etiam  medela  ipsa  et 
salus  unica  mihi  tute  ipse  es  :  isti  enim  tui  oculi  per 
meos  oculos  ad  intima  delapsi  praecordia  meis 
medullis  acerrimum  commovent  incendium.  Ergo 
miserere  tua  causa  pereuntis  nee  te  religio  patris 
omnino  deterreat,  cui  morituram  prorsus  servabis 
uxorem :  illius  enim  recognoscens  imaginem  in  tua 
facie  merito  te  diligo.  Habes  solitudinis  plenam 


might  easily  conject  the  whole,  seeing  one  burning 
without  any  bodily  fire.  So  after  that  she  had  been 
long  time  tormented  in  her  overmastering  affection, 
and  was  no  more  able  to  keep  silence,  she  caused  her 
son  to  be  called  for  (which  word  "  son  "  she  would 
fain  put  away,  that  she  might  not  be  rebuked  of 
shame).  Then  he,  nothing  disobedient  to  the  com- 
mandment of  his  ailing  mother,  with  a  sad  and 
modest  countenance,  wrinkled  like  some  old  grand- 
sire,  came  with  due  obedience  into  the  chamber  of 
his  stepdame,  the  mother  of  his  brother ;  but  she, 
being  utterly  wearied  with  the  silence  that  she  had 
kept  so  long  to  her  torment,  was  in  great  doubt  what 
she  might  do  ;  for  she  rejected  within  herself  every 
word  which  she  had  before  thought  most  apt  for  this 
meeting,  and  could  not  tell  what  to  say  first,  by 
reason  of  her  shame  which  still  trembled  before  its 
fall.  This  young  man  even  then  suspecting  no  ill, 
with  humble  courtesy  and  downcast  countenance 
demanded  the  cause  of  her  present  disease.  Thru 
she,  having  found  the  occasion  to  utter  her  wirkrd 
intent,  put  on  boldness,  and  with  weeping  eyes  and 
covered  face  began  with  trembling  voice  to  speak 
unto  him  in  this  manner:  "Thou,  thou  art  the 
original  cause  of  my  present  dolour ;  but  thou  too  art 
my  medicine  and  only  health,  for  those  thy  comely 
eyes  have  so  pierced  through  these  eyes  of  mine 
and  are  so  fastened  within  my  breast,  that  they  have 
kindled  therein  a  raging  and  a  roaring  fire.  Have 
pity  therefore  upon  me  that  die  by  thy  fault,  neither 
let  thy  conscience  reclaim  to  offend  thy  father,  when 
as  thou  mayest  save  his  wife  for  him  from  death.  More- 
over, since  as  thou  dost  resemble  thy  father's  shape 
in  every  point,  I  do  justly  fancy  thee,  seeing  his 
image  in  thy  face.  Now  is  ministered  unto  thee 



fiduciary  habes  capax  necessarii  facir.oris  otium ; 
nam  quod  nemo  novit,  paene  non  fit." 
4  Repentino  malo  perturbatus  adulescens  quam- 
quam  tale  facinus  protinus  exhorruisset,  non  tamen 
negationis  intempestiva  severitate  putavit  exasper- 
andum,  sed  cautae  promissionis  dilatione  leniendum. 
Ergo  prolixe  pollicetur,  et  bonum  caperet  animum 
refectionique  se  ac  saluti  redderet  impendio  suadet, 
donee  patris  aliqua  profectione  liberum  voluptati 
concederetur  spatium,  statimque  se  refert  a  noxio 
conspectu  novercae,  et  tarn  magnam  domus  cladem 
ratus  indigere  consilio  pleniore  ad  quendam  comper- 
tae  gravitatis  educatorem  senera  protinus  refert :  nee 
quicquam  diutina  deliberatione  tarn  salubre  visum 
quam  fuga  celeri  procellam  fortunae  saevientis  eva- 
dere.  Sed  impatiens  vel  exiguae  dilationis  mulier 
ficta  qualioet  causa  confestim  marito  miris  persuadet 
artibus  ad  longissime  dissitas  festinare  villulas.  Quo 
facto  maturatae  spei  vesania  praeceps  promissae  libi- 
dinis  flagitat  vadimonium  :  sed  iuvenis  modo  istud 
modo  aliud  causae  faciens  execrabilem  frustratur  eitis 
conspectum,  quoad  ilia  nuntiorum  varietate  pollici- 
tationem  sibi  denegatam  manifesto  perspiciens,  mobi- 
litate  lubrica  nefarium  amorem  ad  longe  deterius 
transtulisset  odium,  et  assumpto  statini  nequissimo 


time  and  place  ;  now  hast  thou  occasion  to  work  thy 
will,  seeing  that  we  are  alone.  And  it  is  a  common 
saying  :  '  Never  known,  never  done.'  " 

This  young  man,  troubled  in  his  mind  at  so 
sudden  an  ill,  although  he  abhorred  to  commit  so 
great  a  crime,  yet  he  would  not  be  rashly  stern  to  undo 
her  yet  more  with  a  present  denial,  but  warily  paci- 
fied her  mind  with  delay  of  promise.  Wherefore  with 
long  speech  he  promised  her  to  do  all  according  to 
her  desire :  and  in  the  mean  season,  he  willed  his 
mother  to  be  of  good  cheer,  and  comfort  herself  and 
look  to  her  health,  till  as  he  might  find  some  con- 
venient time  to  come  unto  her,  when  his  father  was 
ridden  forth  :  wherewithal  he  got  him  away  from 
the  pestilent  sight  of  his  stepdame.  And  knowing 
that  this  matter  touching  the  ruin  of  all  the  whole 
house  needed  the  counsel  of  wise  and  grave  persons, 
he  went  incontinently  to  a  sage  old  man,  a  tutor, 
and  declared  the  whole  circumstance.  The  old  man, 
after  long  deliberation,  thought  there  was  no  better 
mean  to  avoid  the  storm  of  cruel  fortune  to  come 
than  to  run  away.  In  the  mean  season  this  wicked 
woman,  impatient  of  any  delay  how  little  soever, 
egged  her  husband  to  ride  abroad  to  visit  some  far 
lands  that  he  had  :  then  she,  maddened  by  the  hope 
that  had  now  (as  she  thought)  grown  rife,  asked  the 
young  man  the  accomplishment  of  his  promise ;  but 
he,  to  avoid  the  sight  of  her  whom  he  hated,  would 
find  always  excuses  from  appearing  before  her,  till  in 
the  end  she  understood  by  the  various  colour  of  the 
messages  which  he  sent  her  that  he  nothing  regarded 
her.  Then  she,  in  her  fickle  mood,  by  how  much 
she  wickedly  loved  him  before,  by  so  much  and  more 
she  hated  him  now.  And  by  and  by  she  r.-illrd  ""•• 
of  her  servants  who  had  conic  with  her  among  her 



et  ad  omne  facinus  emancipate  quodam  dotali  servulo 
perfidiae  suae  consilia  communicat :  nee  quicquam 
melius  videtur  quam  vita  miserum  privare  iuvenem. 
Ergo  missus  continue  furcifer  venenum  praesentarium 
comparat,  idque  vino  diligenter  dilutum  insontis  pri- 
vigni  praeparat  exitio. 

5  Ac  dum  de  oblationis  opportunitate  secum  noxii 
deliberant  homines,  forte  fortuna  puer  ille  iunior, 
proprius  pessimae  feminae  films,  post  matutinum  la- 
borem  studiorum  domum  se  recipiens,  prandio  iam 
capto  sitiens  repertum  vini  poculum,  in  quo  venenum 
latebat  inclusum,  nescius  fraudis  occultae  continuo 
perduxit  haustu,  atque,  ubi  fratri  suo  paratam  mor- 
tem ebibit,  exanimis  terrae  procumbit.  Illicoque  re- 
pentina  pueri  pernicie  paedagogus  commotus  ululabili 
clamore  matrem  totamque  ciet  familiam,  iamque  cog- 
nito  casu  noxiae  potionis  varie  quisque  praesentium 
auctores  insimulabant  extremi  facinoris.  Sed  dira 
ilia  femina  et  malitiae  novercalis  exemplar  unicuin, 
non  acerba  filii  morte,  non  parricidii  conscientia,  non 
infortunio  domus,  non  luctu  mariti  vel  aerumna  funeris 
commota  cladem  familiae  in  vindictae  compendium 
traxit,  missoque  protinus  cursore,  qui  vianti  marito 
domus  expugnationem  nuntiaret,  ac  mox  eodem  ocius 
ab  itinere  regresso,  personata  iiimia  temeritate  in- 


dowry,  the  worst  of  all  and  ready  to  all  mischiefs,  to 
whom  she  declared  all  her  treacherous  secrets.  And 
there  it  was  concluded  between  them  two,  that  the, 
surest  way  was  to  kill  the  young  man  :  whereupon 
this  varlet  went  incontinently  to  buy  poison,  which 
he  mingled  with  wine,  to  the  intent  he  would  give 
it  the  innocent  young  man  to  drink,  and  thereby 
presently  to  kill  him. 

But  while  the  guilty  ones  were  in  deliberation 
how  they  might  offer  it  unto  him,  behold,  here 
happened  a  strange  adventure.  For  the  young  son 
of  that  evil  woman  that  came  from  school  at  noon 
(being  very  thirsty  after  his  dinner)  took  the  pot 
wherein  the  poison  was  mingled,  and  ignorant  of  the 
hidden  venom  drank  a  good  draught  thereof,  which 
was  prepared  to  kill  his  brother:  whereby  he  presently 
fell  down  to  the  ground  dead.  His  schoolmaster,1 
annoyed  by  this  sudden  chance,  called  his  mother 
and  all  the  servants  of  the  house  with  a  loud  voice. 
Incontinently  when  the  poisoned  cup  was  known 
every  man  declared  his  opinion  touching  the  death 
of  the  child ;  but  the  cruel  woman,  the  signal  ex- 
ample of  stepmother's  malice,  was  nothing  moved 
by  the  bitter  death  of  her  son,  or  by  her  own  con- 
science of  parricide,  or  by  the  misfortune  of  her 
house,  or  by  the  dolour  of  her  husband,  or  by  the 
affliction  of  this  death,  but  rather  devised  the  de- 
struction of  all  her  family  to  fulfil  her  desire  to  be 
avenged.  For  by  and  by  she  sent  a  messenger  after 
her  husband  to  tell  him  the  great  misfortune  which 
happened  after  his  departure.  And  when  he  came 
home  the  wicked  woman,  putting  on  a  bold  face 

l  The  jKiedayogus  was  a  trusted  slave  who  conducted  the 
boy  to  and  from  school,  and  had  charge  of  him  when  at 


simulat  privigni  veneno  filium  suum  interceptum. 
Et  hoc  quidem  non  adeo  mentiebatur,  quod  iam 
destinatam  iuveni  mortem  praevenisset  puer;  sed 
fratrem  iuniorem  fingebat  ideo  privigni  scelere  per- 
emptum,  quod  eius  probrosae  libidini,  qua  se  com- 
primere  temptaverat,  noluisset  succumbere.  Nee 
tarn  immanibus  contenta  mendaciis  addebat  sibi  quo- 
que  ob  detectum  flagitium  eundem  ilium  gladium 
comminari.  Tune  infelix  duplici  filiorum  morte  per- 
cussus  magnis  aerumnarum  procellis  aestuat :  nam  et 
iuniorem  incoram  sui  funerari  videbat,  et  alterum  ob 
incestum  parricidiumque  capitis  scilicet  damnatum 
iri  certo  sciebat.  Ad  hoc  uxoris  dilectae  nimium 
mentitis  lamentationibus  ad  extremum  subolis  im- 
pellebatur  odium. 

6  Vixdum  pompae  funebres  et  sepultura  filii  fuerat 
explicata,  et  statim  ab  ipso  eius  rogo  senex  infelix, 
ora  sua  recentibus  adhuc  rigans  lacrimis  trahensque 
cinere  sordentem  canitiem,  foro  se  festinus  immittit 
atque  ibi,  turn  fletu,  turn  precibus,  genua  etiam  de- 
curionum  contingens,  nescius  fraudium  pessimae 
mulieris,  in  exitium  reliqui  filii  plenis  operabatur 
affectibus :  ilium  incestum  paterno  thalamo,  ilium 
parricidam  fraterno  exitio  et  in  comminata  novercae 
caede  sicarium.  Tanta  denique  miseratione  tantaque 
indignatione  curiam  sed  et  plebem  maerens  inflam- 
maverat,  ut  remoto  iudicandi  taedio  et  accusationis 
manifestis  probationibus  et  responsionis  meditatis 
ambagibus  cuncti  conclamarint  lapidibus  obrutum 
publicum  malum  publice  vindicari. 



beyond  all  reason,  declared  that  her  son  had  been 
taken  off  with  his  brother's  poison.  And  so  far  she 
spoke  no  lie,  inasmuch  as  the  boy  had  forestalled  the 
death  that  was  prepared  for  the  young  man  ;  but  she 
feigned  that  he  had  been  for  this  reason  murdered  by 
his  brother's  crime,  because  she  would  not  consent 
to  his  evil  will  which  he  had  had  towards  her,  and 
told  him  divers  other  leasings,  adding  in  the  end 
that  he  threatened  with  his  sword  to  kill  her  like- 
wise, because  she  discovered  the  fact.  Then  the 
unhappy  father  was  stricken  with  a  double  storm  of 
dolour  at  the  death  of  his  two  children,  for  on  the 
one  side  he  saw  his  younger  slain  before  his  eyes,  on 
the  other  side  he  seemed  to  see  the  elder  condemned 
to  die  for  his  offences  both  of  incest  and  of  parricide, 
and  where  he  beheld  his  dear  wife  lament  in  such 
sort,  it  gave  him  further  occasion  to  hate  his  son 
more  deadly. 

But  the  funerals  of  his  younger  son  were  scarce 
finished,  when  the  old  man  the  father,  even  at  the 
return  from  the  grave,  with  weeping  eyes  and  his 
white  hair  befouled  with  ashes  went  apace  to  the 
justice  and  worked  with  all  his  might  for  the 
destruction  of  his  remaining  son,  accusing  him  of 
the  incest  that  he  had  attempted,  of  the  slaughter  ot 
his  brother,  and  how  he  threatened  to  slay  his  wife  ; 
knowing  naught  of  that  wicked  woman's  wiles,  he 
besought  the  magistrates  with  tears  and  prayers, 
yea,  even  embracing  their  knees,  for  this  son's 
death.  Hereby  with  weeping  and  lamentation  he 
inflamed  all  the  elders  and  the  people  as  well  to 
pity  and  indignation,  in  so  much  that  without  any 
delay  of  trial  or  further  inquisition  or  the  careful 
pleading  of  defenders  they  cried  all  that  he  should 
be  stoned  to  death,  to  the  end  that  this  public  criiin- 



Magistrates  interim    metu  periculi  proprii,  ne  de 

parvis  indignationis  elementis  ad  exitium  disciplinae 

civitatisque    seditio    procederet,    partim    decuriones 

deprecari,  partim  populares  compescere,  ut  rite  et 

more  maiorum  iudicio  reddito  et  utrimquesecus  alleg- 

ationibus  examinatis,  civiliter  sententia  promeretur, 

nee  ad  instar  barbaricae  feritatis  vel  tyrannicae  im- 

potentiae  damnaretur  aliquis  inauditus,  et  in  pace 

placida   tarn   dirum    saeculo    proderetur    exemplum. 

7  Placuit  salubre  consilium  et  illico  iussus  praeco*  pro- 

nuntiat  patres  in  curiam  convenirent.     Quibus  pro- 

tenus  dignitatis  iure  consueta  loca  residentibus  rur- 

sum  praeconis  vocatu  primus  accusator  incedit.  Tune 

demum  clamatus   inducitur  etiam  reus  et   exemplo 

legis  Atticae  Martiique  iudicii   causae  patronis  de- 

nuntiat  praeco  neque  principia  dicere  neque  misera- 

tionem   commovere.     Haec  ad  istum  modum  gesta 

compluribus  mutuo  sermocinantibus  cognovi :  quibus 

autem  verbis  accusator  urserit,  quibus  rebus  diluerit 

reus,   ac    prorsus    orationes   altercationesque    neque 

ipse  absens   apud    praesepium    scire   neque    ad    vos 

quae   ignoravi   possum    enuntiare,    sed   quae    plane 

comperi    ad    istas    Htteras    proferam.       Simul    eniin 

finita  est  dicentium  contentio,  veritatem   criminum 

fidemque  probationibus  certis  instrui  nee  suspicioni- 

bus    tantam    coniecturam    permitti    placuit,    atque 



might  be  publicly  revenged  ;  but  the  justices,  fearing 
lest  a  farther  inconvenience  might  arise  to  them- 
selves by  a  particular  vengeance,  and  to  the  end 
there  might  fortune  from  a  little  beginning  no  sedi- 
tion amongst  the  people  with  public  riot,  prayed  the 
decurions  and  the  people  of  the  city  to  proceed  by 
examination  of  witnesses  on  both  sides,  like  good 
citizens,  and  with  order  of  justice  according  to  the 
ancient  custom  ;  for  the  giving  of  any  hasty  sentence 
or  judgement  without  hearing  of  the  contrary  part, 
such  as  the  barbarous  and  cruel  tyrants  accustom 
to  use,  would  give  an  ill  example  in  time  of  peace  to 
their  successors. 

This  safe  opinion  pleased  every  man  ;  wherefore 
the  senators  and  counsellors  were  called  by  an 
herald,  who,  being  placed  in  order  according  to 
their  dignity,  caused  first  the  accuser %nd  thru  only 
the  defender  (again  by  the  voice  of  the  herald)  to  be 
brought  forth,  and  by  the  example  of  the  Athenian 
law,  and  judgement  of  Mars'  hill,  their  advocates 
were  commanded  to  plead  their  causes  briefly,  with- 
out preambles  or  motions  of  the  people  to  pity. 
(And  if  you  demand  how  I  understand  all  this 
matter,  you  shall  understand  that  I  heard  many 
declare  the  same  in  talking  among  themselves,  but 
to  recite  what  words  the  accuser  used  in  his  in- 
vective, what  answer  and  excuses  the  defender  made, 
in  fine  the  orations  and  pleadings  of  each  party, 
verily  this  I  am  not  able  to  do,  for  I  was  fa>t  bound 
at  the  manger ;  but  as  I  learned  and  knew  by  others, 
I  will,  God  willing,  declare  unto  you.)  So  it  was 
ordered  that  after  the  pleadings  of  l>oth  sides  M.-IS 
ended,  they  thought  best  to  try  and  bolt  out  fee 
verity  of  the  charges  by  witnesses,  all  presumptions 
and  likelihoods  set  apart  in  so  great  a  case,  and  to  call 



ilium  potissimum  servum,  qui  solus  haec  ita  gesta 
esse  scire  diceretur,  sisti  modis  omnibus  oportere. 
Nee  tantillum  cruciarius  ille  vel  fortuna  tarn  magni 
iudicii  vel  confertae  conspectu  curiae  vel  certe  noxia 
conscientia  sua  deterritus,  quae  ipse  finxerat  quasi 
vera  asseverare  atque  asserere  incipit  :  quod  se 
vocasset  indignatus  fastidio  novercae  iuvenis,  quod 
ulciscens  iniuriam  filii  eius  mandaverit  necem,  quod 
promisisset  grande  silentii  praemium,  quod  recusaiiti  ] 
mortem  sit  comminatus,  quod  venenum  sua  manu 
temperatum  dandum  fratri  reddiderit,  quod  ad  cri- 
minis  probationem  reservatum  poculum  neglexisse 
suspicatus  sua  postremum  manu  porrexerit  puero. 
Haec  eximie  mentita  1  ad  veritatis  imaginem  verbe- 
rone  illo  simulata  cum  trepidatione  perferente 
Sfinitum  est  iudicium.  Nee  quisquam  decurionum 
tarn  aequus  remanserat  iuveni,  quin  eum  evidenter 
noxae  compertum  insui  culleo  pronuntiaret.  Cum 
iam  sententiae  pares,  cunctorum  stilis  ad  ununi 
sermonem  congruentibus,  ex  more  perpetuo  in 
urnam  aeream  deberent  conici,  quo  semel  conditis 
calculis,  iam  cum  rei  fortuna  transacto,  nihil  postea 

i  Bluemner's  en:endation  for  the  MSS'  eximia  enim,  which 
gives  no  sense. 



in  chiefly  the  servant,  who  only  was  reported  to  know 
all  the  matter.  By  and  by  this  rope-ripe  slave  came 
in,  who,  nothing  abashed  at  the  fear  of  so  great  a 
judgement,  or  at  the  presence  of  the  judges  in  con- 
clave, or  at  his  own  guilty  conscience,  began  to  tell 
and  to  swear  as  true  all  those  lies  which  he  so  finely 
feigned.  With  a  bold  countenance  he  presented 
himself  before  the  justices,  and  confirmed  the  accu- 
sation against  the  young  man,  saying :  "  O  ye  judges, 
on  a  day  when  this  young  man  loathed  and  hated  his 
stepmother  he  called  me,  desiring  me  to  poison  his 
brother,  whereby  he  might  revenge  himself,  and  if  I 
would  do  it,  and  keep  the  matter  secret,  he  promised 
to  give  me  a  good  reward  for  my  pains ;  but  when 
the  young  man  perceived  that  I  would  not  accord  to 
his  will,  he  threatened  to  slay  me :  whereupon  he 
went  himself  and  bought  poison,  and  after  tempered 
it  with  wine,  and  then  gave  it  me  to  give  to  the 
child ;  but  when  he  thought  that  I  did  it  not,  but 
kept  it  to  be  a  witness  off  his  crime,  he  offered  it  to 
his  brother  with  his  own  hands."  When  the  varlet 
with  a  feigned  and  trembling  countenance  had  ended 
these  words,  which  seemed  a  likelihood  of  truth,  the 
judgement  was  ended  :  neither  was  there  found  any 
judge  or  counsellor  so  merciful  to  the  young  man 
accused  as  would  not  judge  him  culpable,  but  rather 
gave  sentence  that  he  should  be  put  and  sewn  in  the 
leather  sack  for  parricides.1  Wherefore,  since  the 
sentences  of  all  were  alike,  and  all  did  agree  to  the 
same  verdict,  there  wanted  nothing  but  (as  the 
ancient  custom  was)  to  put  the  sentences  into  a 
brazen  pot,  and  when  once  they  were  cast  thither, 
the  decision  of  fate  being  finally  taken,  it  should 

1  The  parricide  was  sewn  up  in  a  sack  with  a  dog,  a  cock,  a 
snake  and  an  ape,  and  thrown  into  a  river  or  the  sea. 



eommutari  licebat,  sed  mancipabatur  potestas  capitis 
in  manum  carnificis,  unus  e  curia  senior,  prae  ceteris 
compertae  fidei  atque  auctoritatis  praecipuae  medi- 
cus,  orificium  urnae  manu  contegens  ne  quis  mitteret 
calculum  temere,  haec  ad  ordinem  pertulit : 

"  Quod  aetatis  sum,  vobis  approbatum  me  vixisse 
gaudeo,  nee  patiar  falsis  criminibus  petito  reo  mani- 
festum  homicidium  perpetrari,nec  vos,  qui  iureiurando 
astricti  iudicatis,  inductos  servuli  mendacio  peierare. 
Ipse  non  possum  calcata  numinum  religione  conscien- 
tiam  meam  fallens  perperam  pronuntiare :  ergo  ut 
9  res  est,  de  me  cognoscite.  Furcifer  iste,  venenum 
praesentarium  comparare  sollicitus  centumque  aureos 
solidos  offerens  pretium,  me  non  olim  convenerat, 
quod  aegroto  cuidam  dicebat  necessariurn,  qui  morbi 
inextricabilis  veterno  vehementer  implicatus  vitae 
se  cruciatui  subtrahere  gestiret.  At  ego  perspiciens 
malum  istum  verberonem  blaterantem  atque  incon- 
cinne  causificantem,certusque  aliquodmoliriflagitium, 
dedt  quidem  potionem,  dedi ;  sed  futurae  quaestioni 
praecavens  non  statim  pretium  quod  offerebatur 
accepi,  sed  '  Ne  forte  aliquis '  inquam  e  Istorum 
quos  offers  aureorum  nequam  vel  adulter  repperiatur, 
in  hoc  ipso  sacculo  conditos  eos  annulo  tuo  praenota, 
donee  altera  die  nummulario  praesente  compro- 



remain  a  thing  irrevocable,-  but  he  would  be  de- 
livered to  the  hands  of  the  executioner.  Then 
there  arose  a  sage  ancient  of  the  court,  a  physician 
of  good  conscience  and  credit  throughout  all  the 
city,  that  stopped  the  mouth  of  the  pot  that  none 
might  rashly  cast  his  stone  therein,  saying  thus 
before  the  assembly : 

"  I  am  right  glad,  ye  reverend  judges,  that  I  am  a 
man  of  name  and  estimation  amongst  you  all  the  days 
of  my  life,  whereby  I  am  accounted  such  a  one  as  will 
not  suffer  any  person  to  be  put  to  death  by  false  and 
untrue  accusations,  neither  you  (being  sworn  to  judge 
uprightly)  to  be  misinformed  and  abused  by  invented 
lies,  and  tales  of  a  slave.  For  I  cannot  but  declare 
and  open  my  conscience,  lest  I  should  be  found  to 
bear  small  honour  and  faith  to  the  gods :  wherefore 
I  pray  you  give  ear,  and  I  will  shew  you  the  whole 
truth  of  the  matter.  You  shall  understand  that  this 
servant,  which  hath  merited  to  be  hanged,  came  one 
of  these  days  to  speak  with  me,  promising  to  give 
me  a  hundred  crowns  if  I  would  give  him  a  present 
poison,  which  would  cause  a  man  to  die  suddenly, 
saying  that  he  would  have  it  for  one  that  was  sick  of 
an  incurable  disease,  to  the  end  he  might  be  delivered 
from  all  his  torment.  But  I,  perceiving  that  the 
varlet  was  talking  foolishness  and  telling  a  clumsy 
tale,  and  fearing  lest  he  would  work  some  mischief 
withal,  gave  him  a  potion,  yea,  I  gave  it;  but  to  the 
intent  I  might  clear  myself  from  all  danger  that 
might  happen,  I  would  not  presently  take  the  money 
which  he  offered :  but  lest  any  one  of  the  crowns 
should  lack  weight  or  be  found  counterfeit,  I  willrd 
him  to  seal  the  purse  wherein  they  were  put  with  his 
manual  ring,  whereby  the  next  day  we  might  go 
together  to  the  goldsmith  to  try  them.  This  he  did, 



bentur.'  Sic  inductus  signavit  pecuniam,  quam  ex- 
inde  ut  iste  repraesentatus  est  iudicio,  iussi  de  meis 
aliquem  curriculo  taberna  promptam  afferre,  et  en 
ecce  perlatam  coram  exhibeo.  Videat  et  suum  sigillum 
recognoscat :  nam  quemadmodum  eius  veneni  frater 
insimulari  potest  quod  iste  comparaverit?  " 
10  Ingens  exinde  verberonem  corripit  trepidatio  et 
in  vicem  humani  colons  succedit  pallor  infernus,  per- 
que  universa  membra  frigidus  sudor  emanabat :  tune 
pedes  incertisalternationibuscommovere,  modo  hanc 
modo  illam  capitis  partem  scalpere,  et  ore  semiclauso 
balbutiens  nescioquas  afannas  effutire,  ut  eum  nemo 
prorsus  a  culpa  vacuum  merito  credere t.  Sed 
revalescente  rursus  astutia  constantissime  negare  et 
accersere  mendacii  non  desinit  medicum.  Qui  praeter 
iudicii  religionem  cum  fidem  suam  coram  lacerari  vi- 
deret,  multiplicato  studio  verberonem  ilium  contendit 
redarguere,  donee  iussu  magistratuum  ministeria  pub- 
lica  contrectatis  nequissimi  servi  manibus  annulum 
ferreum  deprehensum  cum  signo  sacculi  conferunt, 
quae  comparatio  praecedentem  roboravit  suspicionem. 
Nee  rota  vel  equuleus  more  Graecorum  tormentis 
eius  apparata  iam  deerant,  sed  offirmatus  mira  prae- 
sumptione  nullis  verberibus  ac  ne  ipso  qu'tdem 
succumbit  igni. 

and  sealed  up  the  money ;  wherefore  understanding 
that  he  was  brought  present  before  you  this  day,  I 
hastily  commanded  one  of  my  servants  to  fetch  the 
purse  from  my  house,  and  here  I  bring  it  unto  you 
to  see  whether  he  shall  deny  his  own  sign  or  no  :  and 
you  may  easily  conject  that  his  words  are  untrue, 
which  he  alleged  against  the  young  man  touching 
the  buying  of  the  poison,  considering  Ije  bought  the 
poison  himself." 

When  the  physician  had  spoken  these  words,  you 
might  perceive  how  the  traitorous  knave  changed  his 
colour,  becoming  deathly  pale  from  the  natural 
complexion  of  a  man,  how  he  sweated  cold  for  fear, 
how  he  trembled  in  every  part  of  his  body,  how  he 
set  one  leg  uncertainly  before  another,  scratching 
now  this,  now  that  part  of  his  head,  and  began  to 
stammer  forth  some  foolish  trifles,  his  lips  but  half 
open,  whereby  there  was  no  person  but  would  judge 
him  culpable.  In  the  end  when  he  was  somewhat 
returned  to  his  former  subtilty,  he  began  to  deny  all 
that  was  said,  and  stoutly  affirmed  that  the  physician 
did  lie.  But  the  physician,  besides  the  oath  which 
he  had  sworn  to  give  true  judgement,  perceiving  that 
he  was  railed  at  and  his  words  denied,  did  never 
cease  to  confirm  his  sayings  and  to  disprove  the 
varlet,  till  such  time  as  the  officers,  by  the  command- 
ment of  the  judges,  seized  his  hands  and  took  tin- 
ring  wherewith  he  had  sealed  the  purse,  and  laid  it 
by  the  seal  thereon  :  and  this  augmented  the  suspicion 
•which  was  conceived  of  him  first.  Howbeit  neither 
the  wheel  nor  the  rack  nor  any  other  torment  (accord- 
ing to  the  use  of  the  Grecians)  which  were  done 
unto  him  nor  stripes,  no  nor  yet  the  fire,  could  enforce 
him  to  confess  the  matter,  so  obstinate  and  grounded 
was  he  in  his  mischievous  mind. 


11  Turn    medicus:  "  Non    patiar  "   inquit  "  Hercule, 
non  patiar  vel  contra  fas  de  innocente  isto  iuvene 
supplicium  vos    sumere,  vel  hunc  ludificato   nostro 
iudicio  poenam  noxii  facinoris  evadere.     Dabo  enim 
rei  praesentis  evidens  argumentum  :  nam  cum  vene- 
num  peremptorium  comparare  pessimus  iste  gestiret, 
nee    meae    sectae    crederem    convenire    causas    ulli 
praebere    mortis,    nee    exitio    sed    saluti    hominum 
medicinam  quaesitam  esse  didicissem,  verens  ne  si 
daturum  me   negassem,  intempestiva  repulsa  viam 
sceleri  subministrarem  et  ab  alio  quopiam  exitiabilem 
mercatus    hie   potionem   vel   postremum  gladio  vel 
quovis  telo  nefas  inchoatum  perficeret,  dedi  venenum, 
sed    somniferum ;     mandragoram    ilium    gravedinis 
compertae  famosum  et  morti  simillimi  soporis  effica- 
cem.     Nee  mirum  desperatissimum  istum  latronem, 
certum  extremae  poenae,  quae  more  maiorum  in  eum 
competit,  cruciatus  istos  ut  leviores  facile  tolerare. 
Sed  si  vere  puer  meis  temperatam  manibus  sumpsit 
-potionem,  vivit  et  quiescit   et   dormit    et   protinus 
marcido  sopore  discusso  remeabit  ad  diem  lucidam  : 
quod  si  vere  peremptus  est,  si  morte  praeventus  est, 
quaeratis  licet  causas  mortis  eius  alias." 

12  Ad    istum   modtim    seniore    adorante    placuit,    et 
ituv  confestim  magna  cum  festinatione  ad  illud  scpul- 

1  Adlington's  marginal  note  is  worth  transcribing  :  "  The 
office  of  a  physician  is  to  cure  and  not  to  kill,  as  I  have  heard 



But  the  physician,  perceiving  that  those  torments 
did  nothing  prevail,  began  to  say  :  "  I  cannot  suffer 
or  abide  that  this  young  man  who  is  innocent  should 
against  all  law  and  conscience  be  punished  and  con- 
demned to  die,  and  the  other  which  is  culpable 
should  escape  so  easily,  and  after  mock  and  flout  at 
your  judgement :  for  I  will  give  you  an  evident  proof 
and  argument  of  this  present  crime.  You  shall 
understand  that  when  this  caitiff'  demanded  of  me  a 
present  and  strong  poison,  I  considered  that  it  was 
not  the  part  of  my  calling  to  give  occasion  of  any 
other's  death,  but  rather  to  cure  and  save  sick 
persons  by  mean  of  medicines.1  And  on  the  other 
side  I  feared  lest  if  I  should  deny  his  request  I  might 
by  my  untimely  refusing  minister  a  further  cause  ot 
his  mischief  by  some  other  way,  either  that  he  would 
buy  poison  of  some  other,  or  else  retuni  and  work 
his  wicked  intent  with  a  sword  or  some  dnngrroiis 
weapon.  Wherefore  I  gave  him  no  poison,  but  a 
soothing  drink  of  mandragora,  which  is  of  such  force 
that  it  will  cause  any  man  to  sleep  as  though  he- 
were  dead.  Neither  is  it  any  marvel  if  this  most 
desperate  man,  who  is  certainly  assured  to  be  put  to 
that  death  which  is  ordained  by  our  ancient  custom, 
can  suffer  or  abide  these  facile  and  easy  torments. 
But  if  it  be  so  that  the  child  hath  received  the  drink 
as  I  tempered  it  with  mine  own  hands,  he  is  yt-t  alive 
and  doth  but  rest  and  sleep,  and  after  his  sleep  he 
shall  return  to  life  again;  but  if  he  hath  been 
murdered,  if  he  be  dead  indeed,  then  may  you 
further  enquire  of  the  causes  of  his  death." 

The  opinion  of  this  ancient  physician  was  found 
good,  and  every  man  had  a  desire  to  go  to  the 
tell  many  physicians  of  speculation  have  done,  before  they 
have  come  to  practice." 



chrum,  quo  corpus  pueri  depositum  iacebat :  nemo 
de  curia,  de  optimatibus  nemo  ac  ne  de  ipso  quidem 
populo  quisquam,  qui  non  illuc  curiose  confluxerit. 
Ecce  pater,  suis  ipse  manibus  cooperculo  capuli 
remoto,  commodum  discusso  mortifero  sopore  sur- 
gentem  postliminio  mortis  deprehendit  filium,  eum- 
que  complexus  artissime,  verbis  impar  praesenti 
gaudio,  producit  ad  populum  atque,  ut  erat  adhuc 
feralibus  amiculis  instrictus  atque  obditus,  deportatur 
ad  iudicium  puer.  lamque  liquido  servi  nequissimi 
atque  mulieris  nequioris  patefactis  sceleribus  pro- 
cedit  in  medium  nuda  veritas ;  et  novercae  quidem 
perpetuum  indicitur  exiliuin,  servus  vero  patibulo 
suffigitur  et  omnium  consensu  bono  medico  sinuntur 
aurei,  opportuni  somni  pretium.  Et  illius  quidem 
senis  famosa  atque  fabulosa  fortuna  providentiae 
divinae  condignum  excipit  exitum,  qui  momento 
modico,  immo  puncto  exiguo,  post  orbitatis  pericu- 
lum,  adolescentium  duorum  pater  repente  factus 

13  At  ego  tune  temporis  talibus  fatorum  fluctibus 
volutabar :  miles  ille,  qui  me  nullo  vendente  com- 
paraverat  et  sine  pretio  suum  fecerat,  tribuni  sui 
praecepto  debitum  sustinens  obsequium,  litteras  ad 
magnum  scriptas  principem  Romam  versus  perlaturus, 
vicinis  me  quibusdam  duobus  servis  fratribus  undecim 
denariis  vendidit.  His  erat  dives  admodum  dominus: 
at  illorum  alter  pistor  dulciarius,  qui  panes  et  mellita 
concinnabat  edulia,  alter  cocus,  qui  sapidissimis  intri- 


sepulchre  where  the  child  was  laid  :  there  was  none 
of  the  justices,  none  of  any  reputation  of  the  town, 
nor  any  indeed  of  the  common  people,  but  went  to 
see  this  strange  sight.  Amongst  them  all  the  father 
of  the  child  removed  with  his  own  hands  the  cover 
of  the  coffin,  and  found  his  son  rising  up  after  his 
dead  and  soporiferous  sleep :  and  when  he  beheld 
him  as  one  risen  from  the  dead  he  embraced  him  in 
his  arms ;  and  he  could  speak  never  a  word  for  his 
present  gladness,  but  presented  him  before  the  people 
with  great  joy  and  consolation,  and  as  he  was  wrapped 
and  bound  in  the  clothes  of  his  grave,  so  he  brought 
him  before  the  judges.  Hereupon  the  wickedness 
of  the  servant  and  the  treason  of  the  stepdame  were 
plainly  discovered,  and  the  verity  of  the  matter 
nakedly  revealed :  whereby  the  woman  was  per- 
petually exiled,  the  servant  hanged  on  a  gallows, 
and  by  the  consent  of  all  the  physician  had  the 
crowns  to  be  a  reward  for  the  timely  sleep  which  he 
had  prepared  for  the  child.  Behold  how  the  great 
and  wonderful  fortune  of  the  old  man  brought  by 
the  providence  of  God  to  an  happy  end,  who,  think- 
ing to  be  deprived  of  all  his  race  and  posterity,  was 
quickly,  nay  in  the  twinkling  of  an  eye,  made  the 
father  of  two  children. 

But  as  for  me  I  was  ruled  and  handled  by  fortune, 
according  to  her  pleasure  :  for  the  soldier  which  got 
me  without  a  seller  and  paid  never  a  penny  for  me, 
by  the  commandment  of  his  captain  was  sent  unto 
Rome  in  course  of  his  duty  to  carry  letters  to  the 
great  Prince,  and  before  he  went  he  sold  me  I 
eleven  pence  to  two  of  his   companions,  brothers, 
being   servants   to   a   man   of  worship  and  wealU 
whereof  one  was  a  baker,  that  baked  sweetbread  and 
delicates :  the  other  a  cook,  which  dressed  with  rich 



mentis  succuum  pulmenta  condita  vapore  mollibat. 
Unico  illi  contubernio  communera  vitam  sustinebant 
meque  ad  vasa  ilia  compluria  gestanda  praedes- 
tinarant,  quae  domini  regiones  plusculas  pererrantis 
variis  usibus  erant  necessaria.  Adsciscor  itaque  inter 
duos  illos  fratres  tertrus  contubernalis,  baud  ullo  tem- 
pore  tarn  benivolam  fortunam  expertus :  nam  ves- 
pera,  post  opiparas  cenas  earumque  splendidissimos 
apparatus,  multas  numero  partes  in  cellulam  suam 
mei  solebant  reportare  domini :  ille  porcorum,  pul- 
Iprum,  piscium  et  cuiuscemodi  pulmentorum  largissi- 
mas  reliquias,  hie  panes,  crustula,  lucunculos,  hamos, 
lacertulos  et  plura  scitamenta  mellita.  Qui  cum  se 
refecturi  clausa  cellula  balneas  petissent,  oblatis  ego 
divinitus  dapibus  affatim  saginabar :  nee  enim  tam 
stultus  eram  tamque  vere  asinus,  ut  duleissimis  illis 
14  relictis  cibis  ceiiarem  asperrimum  faenum.  Et  diu 
quidem  pulcherrime  mihi  furatrinae  procedebat 
artificium,  quippe  adhuc  timide  et  satis  parce  sur- 
ripienti  de  tam  multis  pauciora,  nee  illis  fraudes 
ullas  in  asino  suspicantibus.  At  ubi  fiducia  latendi 
pleniore  capta  partes  opimas  quasque  devorabam  et 
iucundiora  eligens  abligurribam  dulcia,  suspicio  non 
exilis  fratrum  pupugit  animos  et  quamquam  de  me 
nihil  etiam  turn  tale  crederent,  tameii  cotidiani  damni 
studiose  vestigabant  renm.  Illi  vero  postremo  etiam 
mutuo  sese  rapinae  turpissimae  criminabantur,  iam- 
que  curam  diligentiorem  et  acriorem  custodelam  et 
dinumerationem  adhibebant  partium.  Tandem  deni- 
que  rupta  verecuiidia  sic  alter  alterum  compellat : 
"  At  istud  iam  neque  aequum  ac  ne  humanum  qui- 



sauces  fine  and  excellent  meats  for  his  master.  These 
two  lived  in  common,  and  would  drive  me  from  place 
to  place  to  carry  such  vessels  as  were  necessary  for 
their  master  when  he  travelled  through  divers  coun- 
tries. In  this  sort  I  was  received  by  these  two  as  a 
third  brother  and  companion,  and  I  thought  I  was 
never  better  placed  than  with  them  :  for  when  night 
came  and  the  lord's  supper  was  done,  which  was 
always  exceedingly  rich  and  splendid,  my  masters 
would  bring  many  good  morsels  into  their  chamber 
for  themselves  :  one  would  bring  large  rests  of  pigs, 
chickens,  fish,  and  other  good  meats  ;  the  other  fine 
bread,  pastries,  tarts,  custards,  and  other  delicate 
junkets  dipped  in  honey.  And  when  before  meat 
they  had  shut  their  chamber  door  and  went  to  the 
baths ;  O  Lord,  how  I  would  fill  my  guts  with  those 
goodly  dishes  :  neither  was  I  so  much  a  fool,  or  so 
very  an  ass,  as  to  leave  the  dainty  meats  and  grind 
my  teeth  upon  hard  hay.  In  this  sort  I  continued  a 
great  space  in  my  artful  thieving,  for  I  played  the 
honest  ass,  taking  but  a  little  of  one  dish  and  a  little 
of  another,  whereby  no  man  mistrusted  me.  In  tin- 
end  I  was  more  hardier  and  more  sure  that  I  should 
not  be  discovered,  and  began  to  devour  the  whole 
messes  of  the  sweetest  delicates,  which  caused  the 
baker  and  the  cook  to  suspect  not  a  little ;  howbeit 
they  never  mistrusted  me,  but  searched  about  to 
apprehend  the  daily  thief.  At  length  they  began  to 
accuse  one  another  of  base  theft,  and  to  keep  and 
guard  the  dishes  more  diligently,  and  to  number  and 
set  them  in  order,  one  by  another,  because 
would  learn  what  was